Newspaper Archive of
Hays Free Press
Kyle, Texas
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August 26, 2015     Hays Free Press
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August 26, 2015
 

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NEWS Hays Free Press August 26, 2015 Page 2A The Hays Free Press (ISSN 1087-9323) published weekly by Barton Publications, Inc., 122 N. Main St., Buda, TX 78610. Periodicals postage paid at Buda, TX 78610 and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Barton Publications, Inc., P.O. Box 339, Buda, TX 78610. ISSN#1087-9323 NEWS TIPS If you think it's news, we probably do too! Newsroom phone: 512-268-7862 E-mail: news@haysfreepress. com Mail: 113 W. Center Street, Kyle, TX 78640 CORRECTIONS Any erroneous reflection upon the character, standing or reputation of any person, firm or corporation which may appear in the pages of the Hays Free Press will be corrected upon being brought to the attention of the publisher. DEADLINES The deadline for display advertising and any contributed news copy in the Hays Free Press is 5 p.m. Friday the week prior to publication. The deadline for Letters to the Editor and classified word advertising in the Hays Free Press is noon Monday the week of publication, though we encourage readers and advertisers to observe the Friday deadline. LETTERS GUIDELINES We welcome locally written letters to the editor on timely topics of community interest. We ask that you keep them to about 350 words in length and that you not indulge in personal attacks on private individuals. Letters may be edited for brevity and clarity. All letters should be signed by the author and include a daytime phone number where the author can be contacted for verification. Letter writers are limited to one letter per month. Letters can be emailed to csb@ haysfreepress.com. HISTORY Founded April 10, 1903, by Thomas Fletcher Harwell as The Kyle News, with offices on the corner of Burleson and Miller streets in the town's oldest remaining building. It merged into The Hays County Citizen in 1956. The paper consolidated with The Free Press in October, 1978. During its more than 100-year history the newspaper has maintained offices at more than a dozen locations in Kyle and Buda. BY MOSES LEOS III moses@haysfreepress.com Emergency Service Districts in Buda and Kyle are making rapid changes, trying to keep up with population growth while maintaining their level of performance. Roughly three months after gaining voter approval, the Emergency Service District #2 (ESD 2) is preparing to implement those new taxes for the fiscal year 2016. The proposed increase, which could be adopted as part of the ESD's budget on Sept. 14, would increase rates to $.05 cents per $100 home valuation. In May, Buda voters gave the green light for ESD 2 to potentially raise its tax rate to $.10 per $100 valuation, which is the highest rate ESD's can set, per state law. But the ESD 2 Board of Directors passed a resolution to only budget for the five-cent tax rate for the next two years. The rate increase, along with projected new growth in the area, could allow the ESD to potentially bring in $1.293 million in revenue. That level of funding could allow for several key expenditures, including a fully equipped EMS unit that costs approximately $220,000.. ESD 2 currently has three EMS units in service, with two of the units running 24 hours a day, sevefl days a week. Huckaby said those units are becoming "dated," with one of them logging more than 130,000 miles. The rate increase, however, will not go toward staffing the new unit. "Hopefully, as taxes increase, we can staff that ambulance in the next few years," Huckaby said. The increase could also allow the ESD to bump up starting pay for EMS technicians from $48,000 to $52,000 per year. The move, Huckaby said, would be done to "be more competitive in the Central Texas region with departments our size." ESD 8, or the Buda Fire Department, could see a possible $300,000 increase in revenue based on anticipated new growth in the area. ESD 8 is currently locked at the state mandated ten-cent cap. Huckaby said the department plans to maintain operations in the next fiscal year. The revenue generated HAYS FREE PRESS FILE PHOTO In Buda Fire Chief Clay Huckaby's ESD 2, the tax increase would allow the district to bump up the pay for EMS techni- cians from $48,000 a year to $52,000. NORTHEAST HAYS COUNTY EMS Proposing 5 cents per $100 valution KYLE FIRE DEPT. Proposing 10 cents per $100 valuation BUDA FIRE DEPT Proposing 10 cents per $100 valution could allow ESD 8 to purchase three new brush trucks at $100,000 each. Buda's, he said, are outdated. The department also plans to purchase new personal protection equipment, or bunker gear, for firefighters. But one of the major challenges for ESD 8 is keeping up with Buda's growth. Huckaby said 709 homes and 13 commercial businesses were added to the property tax rolls this year. With calls for service going up, the ultimate goal for Huckaby in the future is to ensure the ESD has enough units to respond. "There's no more sitting around and waiting for a call," Huckaby said. "Some days, we're running 15 calls a day and going non-stop." Meanwhile, ESD 5, or the Kyle Fire Department, is anticipating the hiring of six new firefighters in 2016. The expense is part of the ESD's proposed $2.375 million budget. Kyle Fire Department Chief Kyle Taylor said the ESD is not planning any capital expenditures in FY 2016. The city of Kyle, however, is planning to allocate roughly $75,000 from the general fund as part of its proposed FY 2016 budget. That amount would go toward the purchase of new breathing apparatus equipment. Meeting the rapid growth of their area is also a concern for Taylor. ESD 5 services a total population of 65,000 to 70,000 people. But recent measures to generate additional revenue both failed in the last calendar year. Legislation to raise an ESD's tax rate cap failed in the legislature. In November 2014, Kyle voters voted against the ESD collecting sales tax revenue in the city's unincorporated areas. For Taylor, attempting to get the ceiling raised or collecting sales tax are two ways the department will attempt to meet the demand for service. "If property values don't keep going up, we're going to have issues," Taylor said. Darwin is a 1-1/2 years old hound mix who's the best kind of boy for an fun-loving home! Darwin loves to play with other dogs, walks pretty well on leash, and knows some basic commands. This handsome man would do best in a home without small children as he is very unsure of them. Spice is a male 6 months old domestic shorthair. If you're looking for personality, your search is over. Spice is so much fun! He loves to play gently with just about everything... including all sizes of dogs! This adorable boy would be awesome in just about any home. PAWS Shelter and Humane Society is a non-profit, no-kill shelter operated primarily on donations and adoptions. 500 FM 150 E, Kyle, TX ',,' 512 268-1611 * pawsshelter.org All animals are fully vaccinated, spay/neutered, microchipped and dewormed. Publicize your engagements, weddings, anniversaries, new babies or birthdays to the Hays County community with an ad in the Hays Free Press. $105 ad includes text and photos. 512-268-7862 or business@haysfreepress.c0m 4- , [ijii!ilil i II i ii i