Weatherford Democrat

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February 26, 2014

Last debate

County judge contenders meet one last time before Tuesday’s election

(Continued)

“Our auditor, our purchasing department. We all function as part of that, to pass through that money. But they oversee the project. So that’s what the law allows us to do. And I think that if there are improvements, the cities can come up with some ideas and perhaps the Legislature can open that process up but when we talk about taxes in the same breath, the county doesn’t have the money to dig a lake, build a lake. That’s a 30-year process and billions of dollars and a permit of itself for 15, 20 years.

“Water is important to all of us but, again, as an elected official, we have to realize what our authority is and not exceed that.”

McKay: “Well, I would just say this. Four years ago when I ran, I was the only candidate in the state of Texas – based on a Fort Worth Star-Telegram article, which surprises me by the way – who brought up water as a platform issue.

“Look, what I have seen take place with the personal property rights and the water issue is a problem to me. The Upper Trinity Water Conservation District has killed us in my opinion. It has hurt us as landowners. It has hurt developers. I have seen issues with that. I’ve seen issues with cities. I talked today with people from Willow Park. It is an entity that has now come in and taken over our water rights. It dictates to us on our own land, when and where and how much we can drill.

“Now folks, they also charge you a nice little, big, permit fee for that, that we used to never have. I’m for water planning but I don’t want to dig a hole in the county’s money but I’m for uniting the cities with each other to plan. We have to do something. We just passed a proposition in October from the state that allows us some funding for regional water. Well, you can’t live without water, folks. You have to have it. We have to be planning for it. So that’s been one of my big sticklers from the beginning.

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    Weatherford ISD, which is projected to see a rise in property values, is proposing a one-cent tax rate decrease, which would slightly increase taxes for the average homeowner. 

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