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Tax Rollback Election In Washington County

By: Pachatta Pope
By: Pachatta Pope

About four months ago, Blinn College's Board of Trustees voted to raise the tax rate in Brenham by three cents. College officials say the moderate hike was approved out of sheer necessity. The president of Blinn College, Don Voelter said the repairs and renovations needed on the Brenham campus cannot wait any longer.

Some Washington County residents understand the college is in need of repairs, but say they do not want to pay for them. On Tuesday the official signature verification report was presented to the college board. The petition had enough signatures from Washington County registered voters to mandate a tax rollback election that they were hoping for.

Since August, residents in Washington County have been paying the increased tax rate, and that has not sat well with a number of residents. On November 14th the Blinn College Board of Trustees was presented with a petition from county residents calling for a rollback election.

According to local media sources, residents feel they should not have to pay higher taxes for the college's maintenance. President Voelter says county residents should be aware that the name of the college indicates that they are responsible for the campus.

"Our name, legal name is Blinn College, the Junior College District of Washington County", Voelter said. "And the residents of Washington County do own us."

Voelter said perhaps residents who oppose the new tax don't realize that all of the generated revenue from the local taxes remains in Washington County. He related the money raised was slanted to be used for facilities at the Brenham campus only.

The success of the petition now forces the local campus of Blinn College to continue to do what they have been. According to Voelter, that is to keep deferring maintenance and using patch up jobs to try and make do.

"We will have to pick and choose what we do now and what we do later. And we will prioritize those projects", Voelter said.


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