Friday, October 28, 2011

Shenanigans back at Webb County via the tax assessor's office

We might have been remiss in not reporting on Webb lately, but they're still up to their old tricks!

When the county commissioners/CAA squandered nearly 1 Million dollars by mis-managing two programs, it was only a matter of time before they came up with a way to take it out on the taxpayer. Between the Community Action Agency and the Comprehensive Energy Assistance Program, the county mis-spent nearly a Million bucks which the state of Texas said it would not reimburse them for.

Now, the Laredo Morning Times is reporting that anyone paying with a check, credit or debit card at the Webb county tax-assessor/collector's office is being slapped with a 3 % surcharge for simply registering their vehicles. Patricia Barrera, tax collector, claims that this is necessary to offset an increased number of "hot checks" being processed by her office.

While it might make sense to charge more for those paying with a check, it makes absolutely no sense to add that same surcharge to any credit and/or debit card transactions. What's worse is that there was essentially no advanced notification about this to the taxpayers.  Barrera claims (correctly) that this is not really news since the good ol' commissioner's court approved it. I guess she figures that Laredoans have nothing better to do than to watch the county commissioners' meetings which are held at 8am every other Monday.

This is another really bad move by this apparently inept commissioners' court (yes, that includes Judge Danny Valdez). The meetings need to be moved back to the evening so that it's a little bit harder for them to sneak all these tricks through. Most importantly, we need a brand spanking new commissioner's court. I know Garza's not running for re-election. I guess we need to start looking into when Judge Danny's term comes up.

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