By Kathi Bliss
During a brief meeting of the Caldwell County Commissioners Court on Monday, several county residents stepped forward to express support for the creation of an Emergency Services District in the Maxwell area – a suggestion which the Commissioners accepted unanimously.
The public hearing, in which no one opposed the creation of a taxing entity to support the volunteer fire department, which is now supported solely by donations and grants, is among the final steps toward an election in which the voters will either approve or deny the creation of the district. Maxwell VFD officials, who are the driving force behind the initiative, hope such an election will be held in May.
The Emergency Service District, if created, will be allowed to levy a tax used to support fire and rescue operations in the 39-square-mile district, which includes the unincorporated Maxwell area, as well as property within the extraterritorial jurisdictions of Lockhart, Martindale and San Marcos.
A petition in support of holding an election to create the ESD was certified by Caldwell County Tax Assessor Collector Mary Vicky Gonzales, the county’s election official, on Dec. 1, 2009. That petition had 156 valid signatures, and required 150.