By Rebecca Hertz
Killeen Daily Herald
LAMPASAS – The Lampasas City Council proposed that the tax rate remain at 39 cents per $100 of assessed property value for the upcoming fiscal year, which runs from Oct. 1 to Sept. 30, 2010, at Monday's council meeting.
The council scheduled two public hearings regarding the proposed rate for 7 p.m. Aug. 24 and noon Sept. 3.
After some discussion, the council decided that having one meeting in the evening and the other during the day would allow residents who work at night the opportunity to attend.
The first reading of the proposed budget and tax rate will take place on Sept. 14 at the council meeting, with the second reading and official council vote scheduled for Sept. 28.
In other business, Mayor Judith Hetherly updated the council on the status of the Lampasas Economic Development Corporation project for the Lampasas County Higher Education Center. The Lampasas EDC is partnering with the city of Lampasas, Central Texas College, Texas A&M-Central Texas, Texas Tech, Texas State Technical College and local high schools within the county to provide regional residents with academic or career technology training from member institutions of the center, according to a grant application.
The center would allow students and adults to receive education beyond high school and offer students the opportunity to come out of high school with both a diploma and a two-year degree by taking classes concurrently, Hetherly said.
"Students can only do two dual credits per semester," Hetherly said. "But in an early college, like we are proposing, they can start as freshmen and conceivably have an associate's degree at the same time they receive a diploma."
Hetherly reported meeting earlier in the day with the Lampasas ISD board, which accepted the project unanimously and committed to $25,000 in support, as well as use of its facilities.
A grant application is in progress through the Texas Department of Agriculture's "Parallel Pathways to Success."
The amount of grant funds requested for fiscal year 2010 is $124,080, and for fiscal year 2011 in the amount of $120,902. Matching funds would come from the city of Lampasas, Lampasas EDC, Lampasas ISD, Lampasas County and private funds.
"I think we have a very good chance to get this grant," Hetherly said. "This is just a step forward. It's going to take us a lot of steps to get there."
The council unanimously approved a motion to write a letter of commitment and to budget $25,000 for the project.
Also, the council approved a request from Vision Downtown Lampasas! to close Second Street from Key Avenue to Live Oak Street on Aug. 27 from 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. to celebrate the completion of the second mural.
Contact Rebecca Hertz at firstname.lastname@example.org or (254)501-7574.