The Waxahachie City Council meets at 7 p.m. today at City Hall, with council members set to discuss the tax rate for the 2008 fiscal year budget. They also will be asked to record a vote to “schedule public hearings on the tax increase,” according to the agenda.

Also up for consideration are an ordinance amending the Waxahachie Code of Ordinances as relating to regulations for food and food handlers and an ordinance relating to open burning that will bring the city into compliance with state mandates.

Several public hearings are on the agenda, including a first and second public hearing on a requested annexation for 16-acre and 24-acre tracts related to the Easthaven Development.

A public hearing on a zoning amendment request to change the zoning to planned development-general retail will be held relating to 11.023 acres located on the northeast corner of Park Place Boulevard and U.S. Highway 287.

Public hearings also are planned to consider site plan approval relating to destruction of the existing Taco Bell restaurant and construction of a new one at 602 U.S. Highway 77 North and also a specific use permit as requested by Robert and Angela Glass to allow construction of a horse barn at 121 Eagle Point Drive.

In other business, council members will consider approvalof an indigent care affiliation agreement between the city and East Texas Medical Center in reference to the EMS Subsidy Reduction Program and receive reports from director of downtown development Anita Kornegay on the Downtown Farmers Market, a visit from the Texas Main Street Program and requested street closures for the downtown movie and a “42” tournament.

The council also will consider:

preliminary plat approval of an amenity center at Garden Valley north of Broadhead Road a contract with Dunkin Sims and Stoffels Inc. for design services at the sports complex a contract with HDR Engineering for the railroad quiet zone improvements