Nixon City Council ratifies tax rate, approves budget, appoints Amaya to vacant seat


This story has been updated to include information from the secondary meeting held by the Nixon City Council on Monday, Sept. 28, 2020.

The Nixon City Council ratified a tax rate of 0.3450 and swore in Alderman Rene Amaya at its regular meeting on Sept. 24, 2020.

The new tax rate of 0.3450, or 34.50 cents per $100 of valuation, is a decrease from the previous year’s rate of 0.3929. However, this does not mean the amount of taxes Nixon property owners pay will decrease, as it depends on the increase in valuation of local property by the appraisal district.

Mayor Dorothy Riojas also commended two members of the community, Billie D. White and Pablo Aguirre. White was commended for life saving actions, and Aguirre for his work to beautify the downtown area.

The city also heard public comment from Dennis Flores regarding the Nixon food vendor permit cost. Flores suggested that the city’s food vendor permit, which totals $2,400 for a year, is excessive. The council tabled the item, citing a need for the city attorney to be present in order to change ordinances.

A presentation was given to the council by TSG Architects regarding bids for the new city hall, but action regarding negotiations and an award of contract were tabled until the council could host a town hall to hear from the public regarding this matter.

The town hall was set for Monday, Sept. 28 at 5:30 p.m., and both of the community members who signed up to give public comment spoke in favor of continuing with the plan to build the new City Hall and Community Center. Former Alderman Joseph Bjorgaard spoke to the benefit of revenue being brought into the city by companies who will have crews that need feeding and housing. Briana Dominguez also spoke in favor of building the new City Hall, referencing increased revenue from employees of contracted companies spending money in the city. 

Ultimately the Council voted to allow city manager Harold Rice to enter into contracts with North Star Elite out of New Braunfels, Texas for construction of the new City Hall as well as improvements to be made to the fire station. 

In other business:

The council approved a resolution and adopted an agreement which would allow them to engage the law firm of Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP as bond counsel for the purposes of funding the construction of a new city hall.

Reports for the month of August were received from both the Nixon Police and Fire Departments.

No action was taken regarding Texas Gas, as the city had previously passed a resolution in Jan. which allowed them to refrain from raising prices.

Public hearings were called for both the 2020-2021 budget and tax rate, but no one signed up to give comments.