Here were the top five government stories for Pearland and Friendswood in 2023.

1. Trent Epperson named Pearland city manager

On May 8, Pearland City Council announced interim City Manager Trent Epperson as the new city manager.

Epperson had served as interim city manager since November, when the previous city manager, Clay Pearson, was fired after the discovery of a county tax worksheet error that left the city with a $10.3 million deficit and incorrect tax rates.

2. Pearland Mayor Emeritus Tom Reid dies at 97

Pearland Mayor Emeritus Tom Reid died June 24, according to a post on the city of Pearland’s Facebook page. He was 97.

“Mayor Reid dedicated 44 years of his life to serving the Pearland community and was always passionate about continuing to develop Pearland because he believed it was a ‘special place,’" Mayor Kevin Cole said in the Facebook post.

3. Manvel resident survey shows desire for project funding, aversion to higher taxes

Between July 1-28, the city of Manvel distributed a survey designed to gather feedback to help inform the city’s fiscal year 2023-24 budget.

Results from a Manvel community feedback survey show residents would like to see greater investments in city parks and open spaces as well as the maintenance of existing public infrastructure, yet they are wary of raising taxes.

4. Pearland adopts fiscal year 2023-24 budget, award recognition

Pearland approved its fiscal year 2023-24 balanced budget, with a tax rate of $0.6554 per $100 valuation.

City Council voted 6-1 to approve the final reading of the tax rate of $0.6554 per $100 valuation, which marks a more than $0.06 decrease in the tax rate over the past four years.

5. Friendswood City Council passes tax rate increase

In fiscal year 2023-24, Friendswood homeowners will pay a tax rate that is 2.7% higher than last year. On Sept. 11, Friendswood City Council voted to ratify a tax rate of $0.5007 per $100 valuation.

In FY 2020-21, City Council adopted the city's lowest tax rate of $0.487314 per $100 valuation, which the city maintained until this year.