At the Brewster County Commissioners Court meeting on June 23, County Judge Eleazar Cano announced that many taxpayers filed protests after appraisal notices were sent out recently.

Cano said he, Treasurer Julie Morton, and Auditor Patty Roach met with county Appraisal District Chief Appraiser Denise Flores and Tax Assessor-Collector Sylvia Vega.

Said Cano, “They have their hands full with protests. Some of the statements that went out were higher than were expected.”

According to Roach, the appraisal review board, which hears and reviews appraisal matters, would determine the protest outcomes, not Flores. The amount under protest by taxpayers was around $101 million.

Roach then announced the proposed fiscal year 2022 budget timeline, which is subject to change. She said Flores’ deadline to certify the appraisal roll was July 25, and the county has until Aug. 13 to file the proposed budget. Budget and tax hearings will be held on Aug. 25, the day the county will adopt the budget and proposed tax rate.

In other news, Emergency Management Coordinator Stephanie Elmore announced that the county is set to receive a border crisis grant related to Gov. Greg Abbott’s disaster proclamation for border counties. Cano signed off on an emergency declaration to make the county eligible for the grant, with the amount to be announced at the next meeting.

Alluding to the upcoming Fourth of July festivities, Cano said the county would be collaborating with City of Alpine Code Enforcement to ensure the food trucks meet public health standards.

Commissioners unanimously approved a resolution honoring Marathon resident, county historian, and retired engineer and surveyor James Travis Roberts, Jr., who recently passed. Roberts’ daughter Terri Harkey was present at the meeting, and appreciated the commissioners for honoring her father as a valuable historical resource for the county.

“He leaves a big gap, and we will do our best to bring his memory and the integrity that he brought to this community,” said Cano. “Brewster County was near and dear to his heart.” Tourism Executive Director Robert Alvarez also praised Roberts’ contributions to the tourism industry, and alluded to his roadside snapshot exhibits detailing the county’s history. Morton then said a $1,300 donation was made to the Brewster County Historical Commission in Roberts’ name.

Commissioner, Pct. 3, Ruben Ortega said that Friends of Post Park in Marathon had donated $4,010 for special projects. Commissioners then approved both donations.

Finally, Cano announced that in 2022, commissioner’s court meetings customarily held on Wednesdays, would be moved to Tuesdays to accommodate Roach, who does double duty as auditor for Presidio County.

The next regularly scheduled commissioner’s court meeting is set for Wednesday, July 14, at 9:30 a.m. in the commissioner’s courtroom, and via Facebook Live.

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