Williamson Central Appraisal District
Board of Directors Meeting
Charles Chadwell, Chairman, called the regular meeting of the Williamson Central Appraisal District Board of Directors to order Thursday, November 18, 2021, at 9:01 a.m. Board members present; Charles Chadwell, Harry Gibbs, Donald Hisle, Jon Lux, Lora Weber, and Larry Gaddes. Quorum declared.
Some of the District’s management staff attended the meeting.
Pledges of Allegiance
Receipt of Public Comments
Carol Frey, the Chair of the Appraisal Review Board (ARB) was present to address the Board regarding applicants for the ARB. She mentioned that the ARB is still needing additional applicants, indicating there to be 22 positions but currently only 16 applicants. Lankford announced that the District had placed additional advertising to fill these needed positions and that the deadline would be extended. He indicated that the District would like the Administrative Law Judge to appoint these positions by the first of the year.
Taxpayer Liaison Officer’s Report
Report on Property Owner Contacts
Charley Rouse, the District’s Taxpayer Liaison Officer, was present to report on the status of his contact with property owners. Rouse mentioned that his quantity of calls had decreased and that a number of them were for informational purposes only.
Lankford recognized Rouse for being named Citizen of the Year by the Leander Chamber of Commerce.
Update on Appointment of Appraisal Review Board by Administrative Law Judge
Rouse also reported on the appointment of the ARB by the Administrative Law Judge. It was indicated that the District needed 15 full time and six alternate members. There are 11 returning members.
Consider approval of minutes of the Board of Directors for the regular meeting – October 14, 2021.
Hisle made a motion to approve the October 14, 2021, minutes as presented. Lux seconded. The motion carried unanimously.
Consideration of Monthly Financials
The September 2021 financials and expenditures were reviewed and filed for audit.
Virtual Attendance of Board Member – Agenda Posting
Lankford announced that the Governor’s temporary suspension of certain open-meeting statutes had now expired. He indicated that Board members can now dial in to Board meetings; however, they cannot be counted towards the quorum and, to be able to vote, the member must be seen on camera. Lankford indicated that he would look into this issue further. He announced that for meetings, a quorum of Board members must be present in person.
Lankford also mentioned that unless items are listed specifically on the agenda, they cannot be voted upon by the Board. Lux suggested only posting agendas for virtual attendance if it is known that a Board member will not be able to be physically present at a meeting.
The quorum issue was discussed further. It was mentioned that, with the District’s current Board, four members constitute a quorum. The Board questioned if three members could participate in a meeting without having an issue. Lankford indicated that he could check with the District’s attorney.
Chadwell mentioned that if this issue is not pressing, the Board could hold off on further discussions regarding posting agendas for virtual attendance at this point.
No action was taken.
Chief Appraiser Evaluation
Chief Appraiser Compensation
Executive Session began at 9:17 a.m. and ended at 10:20 a.m.
The Board took a short recess and returned to open session at 10:24 a.m.
Consideration and possible action on items discussed in Executive Session
Chief Appraiser Evaluation
No action was taken as a result of Executive Session. The Board indicated that this item would be discussed again at their December Board Meeting.
Chief Appraiser Compensation
No action was taken as a result of Executive Session.
Chief Appraiser’s Report
WCAD Christmas Party
Lankford reminded the Board members that the District’s Christmas Party was scheduled to take place on Friday, December 3rd. He announced that this year’s Christmas Committee had proposed hosting this event in a room at the Kalahari Resort in Round Rock. Chadwell had inquired about the costs associated with the District’s Christmas parties. Lankford shared an estimate of the cost for an onsite party during the workday in comparison to an evening event. He announced that, for years, the District has asked staff members to pay a $15 guest fee to help cover costs. He indicated the average cost over the last five years to be $3,034. Lankford announced that he was happy to see employees participate.
Chadwell mentioned a previous soup fundraiser done by the District that might be considered again. Lankford reminded the Board that these fundraisers are done each month by the District’s employees and then these funds are given back to community at the end of each year.
Lawsuit, Arbitration and SOAH Reports
Lankford reviewed the lawsuit and arbitration reports. There were no State Office of Administrative Hearings (SOAH) on which to report. Lankford announced that the District had over 260 lawsuits filed in the past year and that binding arbitration requests are starting to be finalized. Discussion followed.
Board Agenda Additions for Future Meeting
- Finalization of Chief Appraiser Review
Lankford indicated that this item along with the minutes from the previous meetings and the financials should be the only information in need of discussion for the December Board Meeting, unless something else comes up before the agenda is posted. Chadwell asked that the members let himself and Lankford know if they have additional agenda items.
- Gaddes congratulated Lankford and the District team for their achievement of being named a top workplace for 2021.
- Lux reminded attendees of Cybersecurity Awareness Month. Lankford announced that the District had recently begun internal testing and indicated that employee training is now an annual requirement of most government employees.
The following Board meeting dates had already been set:
Wednesday, December 8, 2021, at 9:00 a.m.
Thursday, January 13, 2022, at 9:00 a.m.
The meeting adjourned at 10:45 a.m.
Charles Chadwell, Chairman Harry Gibbs, Vice Chairman