HORIZON CITY, Texas -

Horizon City homeowners could soon see a big jump in property taxes -  a 35-percent increase from last year.

An average homeowner in Horizon City could expect to pay about $110 more in taxes next year. The city's proposed rate, released today, jumped from about 32 cents to 43 cents per $100 dollars of a home valuation.

The increase is being driven in part by the city's capital improvements plan. It lays out several goals and specific projects, totaling about $45 million in things like road construction, police equipment and drainage. That project list was approved in February by the Horizon City council.

Horizon City Mayor Pro Tem Ruben Mendoza said that the city had managed to keep taxes down and even decrease them in years past. He said that the city now has serious needs, and it also must be made more attractive to businesses and residents.    

"The taxpayers money is sacrosanct, and we need to spend it effectively," Mendoza said. "And I believe we've been doing that. But we feel we're at the point that we need to raise taxes."

Some Horizon City residents said they hadn't heard about the proposed increase, but said they didn't think such a sharp increase was needed, particularly to pay for new police vehicles.

"I believe the courthouses, all of the police station, I believe their equipment is suitable for now," said Horizon City resident Mario Castor.

Horizon City will be holding two upcoming meetings on the proposed tax rate on Aug. 19 and 26 at 6:30 pm at City Hall, 15001 Darrington road.