The Rusk County Groundwater Conservation District (District) board of directors will hold its annual meeting and public hearing to consider the coming 2019/2020 fiscal year tax rate and proposed budget at 4 p.m. on Aug. 26, at the ‘Wall of Brands’ room at the Rusk County Youth Expo Center.
The District is property tax based and since 2011 has maintained an adopted effective tax rate at half-a-cent ($0.005) per $100 of assessed valuation, which for a property of $100,000 appraised value equals $5.
The board proposes to maintain the half-cent tax rate at its coming public hearing and to adopt a balanced budget for the coming year. A projected total revenue near $195,330 and projected expenditures of $195,100.
Due to a drop in mineral values and loss of property since 2011 with little to no recovery, the District’s board and staff designed a financial contingency plan for heightened financial awareness to maintain services to the public through efficiency of its operations and maintenance to sustain a healthy budget year-to-year.
It’s our job to provide for the protection, recharging, prevention of waste of groundwater in Rusk County and overall provide sustainability to our local aquifers, which is 90% of Rusk County’s water supply - for decades and generations to come. We protect the groundwater through our geophysical e-log program, one of the few in the state and seen as a leader in this field in offering this service and protect the groundwater resources with our water well inspections providing information to well owners to maintain a healthy water well.
We are monitoring our groundwater levels quarterly to watch for seasonal, healthy fluctuations and the occasional large shift in water level changes and any nearby impacts – while protecting private groundwater rights through District Rules that follow Chapter 36 of the Texas Water Code.
Also, providing conservation and aquifer education to our area youth through partnerships with the local agrilife extension office and Texas Parks and Wildlife. Providing the services now provides protection and security down the road when we may not see ‘rainy days’. District meeting agendas and more may be found on its website, www.rcgcd.org.