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Commissioners Court selects nominee to serve on Rockwall County Central Appraisal District Board of Directors

(ROCKWALL, TX – July 12, 2018) During its July 10 regular meeting, the Commissioners Court unanimously approved to submit former County Judge Jerry Hogan as its nominee to the Rockwall County Central Appraisal District Board of Directors, to serve in place of Lowell English who resigned after 15 years of service on the CAD Board.

The CAD Board consists of five individuals, with each of the Rockwall CAD’s 17 taxing entities given the ability to nominate individuals to the board. Once all nominations have been submitted, the CAD Board then has the final vote to select its new board member. Currently serving on the CAD Board are Russell Summers, Mark Moeller, Lorne Liechty, and John Hohenshelt.

Commissioner Lee Gilbert, who has previously served on the CAD Board, emphasized the importance of nominating the right individual for the position.

“It’s an important position for the board because our current chief appraiser submitted a resignation as of September 30th, so this board will choose the next chief appraiser in Rockwall County. It’s a lengthy process that I went through with the board, and so it’s important to have the right person in there,” Gilbert said.

Gilbert made a motion to nominate Hogan, stating his experience on the ARB would help him to serve the county well as a member of the CAD Board. Hogan previously served on the Appraisal Review Board for a couple of years after stepping down as county judge in 2014.

County Judge David Sweet noted that the City of Rockwall submitted another former county judge, Bill Lofland, as its nominee. “I don’t know of any other names that have been submitted by the other entities at this point, but I’m going to support Commissioner Gilbert’s motion,” Sweet said. “I would have no criticism whatsoever of that board if they were to select Judge Bill Lofland or my predecessor, Judge Jerry Hogan, to serve in that role.”

In other business, the Commissioners Court also unanimously approved a burn ban for the unincorporated areas of Rockwall County for a period not to exceed 60 days and authorized the county judge to sign any documentation to execute or rescind the ban.

Rockwall County Environmental Health Coordinator Ron Merritt said most counties start enacting burn bans once the Keetch-Byram Drought Index (KBDI) reaches upwards of 600. The drought index ranges from 0-800, where a drought index of zero represents no moisture depletion, and an index of 800 represents absolutely dry conditions.

According to the Texas Weather Connection website, the current drought index average for Rockwall County is 618, with the surrounding counties in the 500-700 range.

The burn ban includes all outdoor burning except for firefighter training; public utility, natural gas pipeline or mining operations; and planting or harvesting of agricultural crops.

Merritt said each individual fire department is responsible for posting signs to make the public aware of the burn ban. The county will also fly a burn ban flag, which was presented to the Commissioners Court by Smokey Bear in May this year, outside the historic downtown courthouse.

The court also gave its approval of a professional services consulting agreement with its selected vendor, Broaddus & Associates, to formally begin work on performing a needs assessment for the Rockwall County Jail. During its regular meeting on June 12, the court had approved Broaddus’s proposed price of $334,560 to conduct the needs assessment for the jail, with a notice not to exceed $147,284 to be expended in the FY 2018.

In other action, the court approved:

-A Preliminary Plat for Tacoma Ranch located at FM 548 and High Point Road in Rockwall County
-Revisions to the Rockwall County Policy on Sick Leave Pool
-Revisions to the Rockwall County Sick Leave Pool Contribution Form
-Authorizing repair services for some of the County’s hail damaged vehicles
-The selection of Pattillo, Brown & Hill, L.L.P. from bids received for outside financial audit services
-Change Order #4 to the System Purchase Agreement with Harris Corporation for the radio communications system
-A Resolution for the submission of a grant application for the Crimes Against Children Prosecutor grant
-A Resolution for the submission of a grant application/renewal for the Part Time Victim Assistance Coordinator grant renewal
-A Resolution for the submission of a grant application/renewal for the Violent Crimes Against Women grant renewal

Submitted press release.

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