By Rodney Hays
The word "tax" can be confusing, especially combined with the word increase. But the good new is that Prosper residents will not experience a tax increase, only a tax revenue increase.
According to state law, the town has to approve a proposal if tax revenues in the current year exceed the revenues from the previous year. Those increases come from increased values in properties in the town. Last year, the Town of Prosper had increased total tax revenue of 12.29 percent.
"It’s an increase in values, so its increasing the revenues," said Prosper mayor Ray Smith. "By state law, we have to advertise that way and act on it that way."
There are no tax rate increases this year. The proposed tax rate is still 52 cents per $100 of valuation, the same as the previous two years. The tax rate and $24 million budget will be voted on at the next council meeting set for Sept. 24.
In other business:
n The council held the second public hearing on the proposed budget. One speaker addressed Council and expressed concern regarding what he perceived as the underfunding and under-manning at the Police Department. Another speaker stressed the importance of priority funding for infrastructure projects. She also commended Council on the budget. The public hearing was closed, and no action was required of Council.
n The council approved the consent agenda, including the Consent Agenda rezoning 0.5 acre, located on the north side of First Street, west of Craig Road (705 E. First Street) from Single Family-15 to Downtown Office and the approved the budget for the Prosper Economic Development Corporation.
n The council held a public hearing on rezoning 5 acres located on the west side of Preston Road, north of Broadway Street, from Commercial to Planned Development-Retail.
Development Services Department Director Chris Copple presented this item. Following the opening of the public hearing, the Council heard from the applicants, after he completed a conversation with the president of the Stone Creek HOA. The applicant was asked about the types of trees to be used for the natural buffer between the office park and the surrounding neighborhood. After the closing of the public hearing, staff was asked about the restrictions regarding lighting. After some discussion, the Council unanimously approved the request.
n The council held a Public Hearing to rezone 135 acres, located on the west side of Preston Road, south of Frontier Parkway, from Agricultural to 127.0± acres of Single Family-12.5 and 8.0 acres of Office.
Copple presented this item as well. Council asked questions regarding the planned street development and the impact on existing residences. There were no speakers during the public hearing. Council passed this request unanimously.
n The council held a public hearing amending a town ordinance relating to certain definitions, uses and regulations pertaining to alcoholic beverages.
There were no speakers on this topic, and after closing the public hearing, Council approved this ordinance unanimously.
n The council tabled an item to consider and act upon approving an office lease for municipal offices between MSW Prosper 380, LP, and the Town of Prosper.
The meeting was adjourned at 7:46 p.m. Council member Danny Wilson was not present and Jason Dixon left the meeting during Executive Session.