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The City of West Lake Hills was founded and incorporated as a village on September 9, 1953 by a small group of people who wanted to preserve the lifestyle of the hills. The City then included approximately the same area as the City boundaries do today. On December 3, 1957, the village was changed to a city to achieve broader powers. The City today is comprised of 2,560 acres (four square miles) with approximately 40 miles of public streets. The population is 2,542 (1990 Census figure). There are approx. 1,000 homes and approximately 200 businesses in West Lake Hills.
In Texas, until a city's population exceeds 5,000 it is classed as a General Law City, which means that the Legislature controls by statute and determines its authority and power. For example, in most cases West Lake Hills cannot annex territory in its ETJ unless a majority of time registered voters of the area to be annexed sign a petition seeking annexation.
West Lake Hills is unique in many ways. The citizens and their elected and appointed officials are all dedicated to preserving the rural environment and maintaining the natural beauty of the area. Growth is inevitable, but every precaution is taken to ensure controlled growth that is compatible with tile City's ideals. The City Council has passed strict ordinances limiting lot size to one-acre minimum, setbacks for buildings, and other zoning and building restrictions to insure minimum disturbance of the environment.
The primary duties of the Council and the City Administration are to provide public safely and to control development in a manner that will preserve the natural environment and protect the health and welfare of the citizens. The City Council meets regularly the second and fourth Wednesday of each month. Citizens are invited to attend Council meetings and their input and presence is always welcome.
West Lake Hills has one of the lowest city tax rates in the State: $.0825 per $100 valuation. Citizens are fortunate to have Travis County Water District #10 which provides potable water. Travis County Emergency Services District No. 9 provides fire protection. The City of Austin provides electricity.