During Red Oak Mayor Alan Hugely’s fourth and final city address, he discussed unavoidable growth and how it has affected water resources and the sales tax. He also introduced the lone candidate for mayor.
Current Red Oak ISD trustee Dr. Mark Stanfill is in line to resume responsibilities once Hugley is out of office. At the end of the meeting, Stanfill gave a few words.
“I feel quite honored to have this opportunity,” Stanfill expressed. “As Mayor Hugley has conveyed to all of us, growth is coming. We don’t want it to step over Red Oak, and I hope we can manage it the appropriate way. I’m a good listener; I want to hear what you have to say.”
Hugley mentioned the high cost of water in Red Oak and that it is not going ever to go down. He recalled the days when Red Oak served 3,000 people from three wells.
“Water is going to continue to be an issue for us,” Hugley stated.
As the population grows, the city is building a 36-inch water line from Dallas. Hugley mentioned the current main water line that services most residents is only 14 inches wide and is 35 years old.
Hugley also had several points that reflected on the positive growth of Red Oak.
“This is not a community that has time to slow down. It’s full throttle right now, and if we work together, then we can make it happen,” Hugley emphasized.
With growth comes more shopping. Gross retail sales continue to soar and have increased by more than four million dollars since last year. Moreover, since 2010, gross retail sales have improved by over 12 million dollars.
Hugley pointed out the property tax in Red Oak has not changed in the past seven years.
Data showed, Red Oak currently stands at a $0.649 tax rate, behind Waxahachie ($0.680), Midlothian ($0.708) and Italy ($0.906).
He then compared the sales tax to property taxes saying, “sales tax has to continue to grow.”
When relating the ratio of property tax to sales tax, Red Oak’s 2018 budgeted property tax is more than doubled the sales tax. Meanwhile, Waxahachie has a one to one ratio.
“In Red Oak, we have to work with the lowest property tax in the area, and this is why it’s been our mission for the past 10 years to drive up sales tax to get sales to stay at home in Red Oak getting more retail,” Hugley explained.
Speaking of growth, Red Oak’s population has grown at 193 percent from 2000 to 2017. At that same duration, Collin County’s population growth is at 90 percent.
But, from 2010— 17, Red Oak has grown at 17 percent. Meanwhile, Ellis County’s population is growing at 16 percent and Collin County is growing at 19 percent.
Hugely then reflected on the number of residential permits issued and pointed out that in 2016, there was a noticeable drop from 168 permits to 102. He explained that the number of lots simply ran out.
In 2017, the number of residential permits raised from the previous year to 122, but hasn’t reached that higher number.
“The City of Dallas, those in DFW are going to turn around and see the what’s down here and when they do, we have to be prepared. And that’s happening now,” Hugley said.
• School excellence for Red Oak ISD, Life School, and Texas State Technical College
• Construction and completed projects of retailers and residential neighborhoods
• Construction on FM 644 and Ovilla Road
• Hugley apologized for the lack of recreational developments
• Positions open with the city: public works director and assistant public works director
• Recognition of Red Oak Police Department overcoming staffing issues
• Recognition of Red Oak Fire Department receiving “Best Practice” by the Texas Fire Chiefs Association
Ashley Ford | Facebook | Twitter | 469-517-1450