In this article, we will be discussing the highlights of the Rusk County finance committee meeting that took place on June 15th, 2023. The meeting was organized to discuss various financial matters and make important decisions regarding the tax appraisal district. We will cover the key points discussed during the meeting and provide insights into the decisions made by the committee.
Approval of Minutes
The meeting began with the approval of the minutes from the previous meeting held on May 18th. The committee members unanimously voted in favor of approving the minutes, signifying their agreement on the content discussed in the previous meeting.
Reviewing Tax Properties
The committee then moved on to the discussion of tax properties. It was noted that out of the four submitted properties, three were taken off the list as the owners were working on the homestead. The committee decided to focus on one property, a 40-acre land that belonged to an individual who had passed away. The owner’s cousin, whose phone was disconnected, was the next contact person. The committee decided to proceed with the property and emphasized the importance of documenting this decision to establish the seriousness of the matter.
Determining the Price of Flat Books
Next on the agenda was the pricing of flat books. The committee had previously sent back 417 flat books to correct any errors. The correction process was completed promptly, and the committee expected to receive 300 new flat books by the end of the week. The price of the flat books was set at $13,275, as per the committee’s survey of the prices charged by other counties. It was noted that the surrounding counties were charging around $25 per flat book. After careful consideration, the committee decided to increase the price to $30 per flat book, taking into account the fees charged by neighboring counties.
Sales and Profit Calculation
The committee discussed the sales and profitability of the flat books. By selling the books at $30 each, the committee estimated that they would need to sell approximately 440 books to make a profit. The sales from the previous publication were noted to be high, with a significant number of books still in stock. The committee debated whether to include taxes in the price of the flat books and considered the possibility of charging higher prices based on the rates of neighboring counties.
Interest Rates and Investments
The committee then turned its attention to interest rates and investment options. It was noted that interest rates for certificates of deposit (CDs) were currently around 5%. However, they had not seen a significant drop recently, and the committee decided to wait until after tax collections to reassess the rates. The committee also mentioned the American Deposit Services, which offered attractive rates for investments. The location of American Deposit Services was acknowledged to be in the software area.
Holding Departments Accountable for Budgets
One of the key points of discussion during the meeting was holding departments accountable for their budgets. The committee acknowledged the need for a system that would prevent departments from exceeding their allocated budgets. Suggestions were made to penalize departments that repeatedly overspend, either by withholding their committee’s per diem or implementing a raise. The committee members agreed that they should also hold themselves accountable and find ways to avoid overspending.
The Rusk County finance committee meeting on June 15th, 2023, addressed various financial matters related to the tax appraisal district. The committee made decisions regarding tax properties, priced flat books, discussed sales and profitability, and reviewed interest rates. They also emphasized the need to hold departments accountable for their budgets and discussed possible solutions for effectively managing expenses. Through this meeting, the committee demonstrated a commitment to responsible financial management in the county.