Mike Kunst has a contract to become Orange city manager and will start on October 1. The city council approved his contract Tuesday. His beginning annual salary will be $150,000 and include $6,000 a year for vehicle allowance.
The council also held separate public hearings on the 2020 budget and tax rate. No one spoke in favor or against either. Another public hearing on the budget will be Tuesday.
The tax rate is set to be 80.7 cents per $100 valuation, compared to the current rate of 80.5 cents per $100.
The budget has $22.9 million in the city’s general fund, which is used for basic operations like fire and police services. In addition, the budget has $1.1 million in the debt services fund and $8 million for capital projects from the bonds the city sold earlier this year.
The Water and Sewer Department operate in a separate fund, known as an “enterprise fund” because money comes from fees paid by customers and not property tax dollars.
The Water and Sewer budget had $8.2 million for the basic budget. The budget also has $4.4 million for the special revenue fund, $428,863 for the bond fund, and $25,900 for capital projects.
The council also voted to lease space in the new city hall to U.S. Representative Brian Babin of Crockett, who represents Orange County in his District 36. The congressman will pay the city $500 a month for three offices.
The council approved a proclamation making September Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month and October as Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Representatives of the Julie Rogers Gift of Life received the proclamation.
-Margaret Toal, KOGT-