At a special meeting of the Blanco County Commissioners Court on March 16, Commissioners received information relative to the 2010 Census and its impact on County alignments. The report came in the form of an Initial Assessment of County Political Boundaries and a brief evaluation of the changing demographics of the County Population.
In a letter to Judge Guthrie and Commissioners dated March 7, 2011, Attorney Robert T. "Bob" Bass stated the following:
"You will find attached to this letter our initial assessment of your existing political boundaries based upon population data extracted from the 2010 Census.
"Based upon these numbers, Blanco County will be legally required to redistrict the Commissioners Court Precincts in 2011. The total maximum deviation between your largest and smallest existing Precincts, in terms of population, can be found under Tab 2 of the Initial Assessment. As long as this number is below 10%, you are not legally obligated to redraw your political boundaries. However, the total Maximum Deviation for Blanco County, based upon the 2010 Census, is 29.27%. Consequently, you will be obligated to go forward with redistricting…"
READ MORE: How much has the population changed?
Mr. Bass explained to Commissioners that the political boundaries must legally retain "one-person-one-vote" balance. This requirement is now carried forward by statutory requirement in Article 42.001 of the Texas Election Code, and has been extended in turn to virtually all political bodies that elect representatives from special member districts or geographic regions of political jurisdictions in which the candidates for representative office reside.
In counties inhabited by a significant minority population, there is also a need to assure minority representation.
Commissioners approved providing information and guidance to legal counsel hired to assist Commissioners Court in redistricting of County political boundaries.
At a special meeting of the Commissioners Court held on March 22, it was decided to extend the Burn Ban for Blanco County until 9:00 a.m. on April 12.
Commissioners voted to release the expired maintenance bonds for road improvements for Rocking J Ranch subdivision Units 2 and 3. In turn, they accepted maintenance bonds for road improvements, sewer collection systems and water distribution facilities for Rocking J Ranch subdivision Unit 4.
Commissioners voted to accept the extension of Letters of Credit for road improvements, sewer collection systems and water distribution facilities for Rocking J Ranch subdivision, Unit 6.
Commissioners accepted a bid by GovDeals of $1,800 for a chip spreader that had been declared excess by the County.
An annual review of the County Investment Policy resulted in its acceptance without amendment.
The go-ahead was given for the requirements of the Town of Round Mountain regarding the construction permit of $150.00 and a letter of indemnification in favor of the Town of Round Mountain for the emergency communication towers to be located in the Precinct 3 yard at 862 E. RR 962 in Round Mountain.
An agreement was approved between Blanco County and Jimmy L. Barho for consulting services for the construction of the emergency communications towers. The agreement consists of consulting fees in the amount of $60.00 per hour and 50¢ per mile travel expense to be paid utilizing Homeland Security grant funds.
"Mr. Barho did the towers for Burnet and Llano Counties and we want to authorize him to do ours, too," said Judge Guthrie. He indicated that there is a tremendous amount of work to be done by Mr. Barho in order for the County to be in compliance with the requirements of the FFA, FTC, the Historical Commission and other entities. "We will be billed on a monthly basis."