Monthly Archives: February 2014

Coupland Civic Organization General Meeting – Tonight at St. Peter’s Fellowship Hall

TEXAS STAR-RoseThe Coupland Civic Organization will hold its monthly meeting on Monday, February 24, in the Fellowship Hall of St. Peter’s Church of Coupland, not at the fire station. Dr. Dana Boehm, a veterinarian in this area, will discuss her recent mission trip to Kenya where she helped villagers become more self-sufficient in their agricultural practices.

The Civic Organization will host a pulled pork sandwich supper including chips, tea, and dessert at 6:30 p.m., and the program will begin at 7.

Homestead Exemption and Tax Deferral Filings are Free

WilcoFebruary 6, 2014 (Williamson County, TX) – In Texas, property owners can receive a discount on their property taxes on their primary residence as of January 1 of each year through a homestead exemption.  Anyone who is unsure whether they already have a homestead exemption on file can look up their status by name, address or account number on the Williamson Central Appraisal District (WCAD) website at .  Applications for a homestead exemption may be filed at the Appraisal District or online, for eligible property owners, at If you have questions or need help, please contact WCAD staff at or at 512-930-3787.


In addition, seniors age 65 and older and disabled persons can benefit from a tax freeze ceiling from the school district and any other taxing jurisdiction that utilizes the local option freeze.  Under the tax freeze, tax bills for property owners are frozen the year the owner turns age 65 or is disabled and becomes eligible for the exemption.

Some taxpayers may want to take advantage of a tax deferral.  This assures that the taxpayer will not have a foreclosure suit filed against them for nonpayment of property taxes.  The interest for a deferral is 8% per year and is compounded.  The taxes are settled at the time of death, sale or when it no longer is the taxpayer’s principal place of residence.

Filing for a homestead exemption, senior citizen/disabled person tax freeze or deferral is free of charge and forms are available from the Williamson Central Appraisal District, or the Williamson County Tax Assessor/Collector’s Office.


“Companies will try to sell their services to file these forms for individuals, but that is not necessary,” stated Deborah Hunt, Williamson County Tax Assessor/Collector.  “These forms are simple to fill out and may be filed free of charge.”

Forms for these free services and most questions about property taxes can be answered on the Williamson County Tax Assessor/Collector’s web site at or the Williamson Central Appraisal District’s web site at   For questions about property taxes, call 512-943-1603.

This Week at St. Peter’s Church of Coupland – “Teach Me, O Lord!”

Submitted by Pastor Frank Dietz:

This is the Sunday of closure for Epiphany just prior to Transfiguration Sunday (2 Mar) and the launch of Lent on Ash Wednesday. The service proposes in the language of the 1 Corintians lesson (1Cor.3:10=11,16-23) and Jesus’s pointedness (Matt.5:38-48–concluding Matt’s “Sermon on the Mt”). Since the season of Epiphany is about a summons to be light in a dark, shadowy and troubling world, this Sunday “reboots” life directions richly in the Spirit’s gifts.

With an emphasis on Seminary/Church Vocations and an assurance to pursuing the questions we ask with integrity, we await word from our “still speaking, . . .” God. The Psalm, 119’s vv.33-40, lays a groundwork for the entire time of praise, prayer and discovery. All are always welcome.


Huntington Sculpture Garden Vandalized

One of Jim Huntington’s large, outside sculptures on display at the Huntington Sculpture Foundation was vandalized on Saturday night.


Evidence was collected from the scene by the Williamson County Sheriff’s Department and surveillance video is being examined. According to Huntington, this is the first time his sculptures have been vandalized. He said, “I am going to rework this, one of my favorite sculptures dedicated to Hiromi Uehara, the brilliant young pianist, and hope that its new version is acceptable.”

Jim said, “I heard the woomph when it hit the ground and I said to myself, ‘OMG, I hope I am not under assault.’ I was.” He went on to say, “It was heartbreaking to have one of my favorite pieces damaged and it sickens me to think what is in store for the sculptures when I pass, if the culture keeps degrading to the degree it has been.”

If anyone in the area has any information that might help identify the culprits, please contact the Williams County Sheriff’s Office.

[Publisher’s Note: This would be a good time to pay a visit to the Huntington Sculpture Foundation and make a donation to help defray the cost of recreating this work of art. Take some time to look around and bathe in the subtle energies. Huntington’s works are already part of our heritage. The sculpture garden is a rare treasure and is one of the things that makes Coupland so unique.]

City Council Meeting Highlights for February 13, 2014

L-R: Susan Garry, Barbara Piper, Jack Piper, Karen Marosko, Eldridge Tidwell, Susan Schmidt (September 12, 2013)

L-R: Susan Garry, Barbara Piper, Jack Piper, Karen Marosko, Eldridge Tidwell, Susan Schmidt (September 12, 2013)

The Coupland City Council covered some nuts and bolts issues pertaining to the Subdivision Ordinance, future elections, and the first re-platting of an existing property to be handled by the City. There was also a discussion about zoning. Present for the meeting were Mayor Jack Piper and Aldermen Barbara Piper, Susan Garry, Eldridge Tidwell, and Susan Schmidt. Karen Marosko was unable to attend.

Here are the highlights:

  • The Mayor presented the financial report. As of January 31, the City hd $31,103 in the bank. He directed the Aldermen to the itemized income and expenses report. The City has collected about $24,000 in property tax revenue so far. The budget calls for $32, 000 but he expects more to trickle in over the coming months. He also noted that about half of the annual budget for street repairs was used to make repairs to CR 458.
  • Susan Garry had proposed an amendment to the Subdivision Ordinance to incorporate family grant provisions that were inadvertently left out of the final version of the ordinance. The Council approved a motion to amend the ordinance accordingly. Mayor Piper pointed out that when the exact wording is developed, the revised ordinance will be on a future agenda and will require a vote.
  • An application to replat the Prinz property was received by the City. Mayor Piper reported that it was submitted to the City’s engineering firm. They found some issues that required correction. The Mayor pointed out that they were all minor and easily corrected. A motion to accept the preliminary plat with the caveat that the exceptions be resolved to the satisfaction of the City Engineer was approved by the Council.
  • In a discussion about road maintenance, the Mayor said that now that the repairs to CR 458 were complete, we could look at other needs in the city. More than one Alderman expressed a concern that illegally overloaded grain trucks cause excessive wear and tear on the roads, thereby increasing road maintenance expenses.
  • The Council adopted an ordinance changing the City election from May to November and altering the terms of office of all Council members accordingly. This was made possible by a state law allowing newly incorporated cities to make such a change within 2 years of their incorporation date. The Mayor said that this move would save money for the City.
  • A resolution to form a Planning and Zoning Committee was tabled by the Mayor. He said he was still waiting to hear back from some potential members of the committee.
  • During the recognition portion of the meeting, Barbara Piper mentioned the Annual Coupland Volunteer Fire Department Chili Supper on Saturday, February 22 and asked everyone to come out and support the event. She also mentioned that Dr. Dana Boehm will make a presentation at the Coupland Civic Organization General Meeting on Monday, February 24. She will be talking about her mission trip to Kenya, which involved teaching sustainability to villagers. Eldridge Tidwell mentioned that some members of his church were going on a mission to the University of Ghana. Finally, Mayor Piper announced the early voting dates for the County elections in May. Early voting will take place April 28 through May 3 and May 5 through May 6. The election is on May 10.
  • During the Citizen’s Communications portion of the meeting, the City Secretary (yours truly) read a letter from local resident Jim Huntington, which he had asked to be read into the record of the meeting. Mr. Huntington expressed his opposition to the establishment of zoning in Coupland. Although at least one Alderman said she understood and sympathized with Huntington’s comments, other council members expressed their concerns about things like junk vehicles, the possibility of gun ranges, and the possibility of the establishment of a wild boar slaughterhouse within city limits.

The next meeting of the Coupland City Council will be on March 13.