According to a third quarter report by Templeton Demographics, Georgetown ISD is projected to gain about 3,000 students by 2025. That is an increase of 26.8%, it said. Bob Templeton presented the findings to the GISD board of trustees Jan. 20, acknowledging that despite the COVID-19 pandemic, growth will continue to break records in Georgetown and the Central Texas area. “The housing market has not seen an impact at all [from the pandemic],” Templeton said. “In fact, the opposite is what has happened to the housing market as to what we were anticipating back in March.” He added that the area housing market saw one of its best years in 2020. view article arw

Five years after the passage of their last bond, Richardson Independent School District (ISD) is primed to move forward with another this year to the tune of $750 million. The district’s Bond Steering Committee (BSC) recommended a tax rate of $1.40 per $100 of evaluation — while not a rate increase, a real dollar increase above the 2.5 percent allowed by Senate Bill 2 without voter ratification. view article arw

If and when you go looking for the killer of legislation to bring marijuana or casinos to the state of Texas in 2021, consider the evidence against Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar. The comptroller didn’t kill anything outright, and the killings weren’t intentional. He wasn’t campaigning against either pot or wagering. He hasn’t taken a loud position on either one; that’s a legislative concern, and he’s not a legislator any more. view article arw

Kilgore ISD loses appeal in tax case

January 0808:40 AM

Kilgore ISD has lost an appeal in a legal case stemming from their repeal of a local tax exemption in 2015.  On Dec. 22, the 12th Court of Appeals in Tyler rejected the district’s latest appeal, filed from Gregg County Court at Law No. 2, and refuted each of the three complaints raised by Kilgore ISD.  The case, 2016-1850-CCL2, originated in 2015 when, according to the appeals court’s opinion, “on June 15, 2015, Governor Greg Abbott signed Senate Bill No. 1 (SB-1), a bill to provide property tax relief and comprehensive school funding, which was to become effective on the later passage of an enabling constitutional amendment by the voters, increased a statewide homestead exemption, and forbade any local taxing authority with a local option homestead exemption (LOHE) in place in 2014 from repealing that LOHE before the end of calendar year 2019.”    (11) view article arw

The North Lamar ISD board of trustees is expected to approve an application for an appraised value limitation for a solar farm west of Paris on Highway 82 when the board meets at 6 p.m. Monday in the Roy C. Chadwick Administration Office, 3130 N. Main St.  If approved, the district will limit roughly $120 million in capital investment by Mockingbird Solar Center to $30 million, according to the center’s application with the Texas Comptroller’s office. In exchange, Mockingbird will make a supplemental yearly contribution of more than $200,000 for the next 15 years in addition to a one-time payment to cover any tax revenue lost by the district because of the agreement. The limitation does not apply to the interest and sinking side of the district’s tax rate, nor to Lamar County or Paris Junior College property taxes. view article arw

Very reluctantly and knowing the potential consequences, members of the Sealy ISD Board of Trustees voted to cut the optional local homestead tax exemption from 20% to 10% in order to prevent having to make drastic budget cuts later due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the impact of House Bill 3 from the last legislative session.    (30) view article arw

KILGORE — Kilgore ISD is looking to recoup funds lost in 2019 as the result of a statewide lawsuit that significantly changed how heavy oilfield equipment is taxed in Texas.  The lawsuit, EXLP Leasing LLC et al. v. Galveston Central Appraisal District, originated in 2011 when the Legislature changed the tax classification of oilfield gas compressors. The change means compressors will now be taxed in the county where their home yard is located, rather than in the county where the compressors are being used.  A years-long lawsuit followed and, in 2018, the Texas Supreme Court ruled in favor of oil and gas companies, leaving school districts and city governments across the state on the hook for millions in tax repayments.  “If y’all remember, right at a year ago, we were sitting here having to pay back about 12 to 15 companies in the East Texas area that had won a lawsuit statewide that got their values reduced tremendously. We had to pay some $600,000 back,” said Kilgore ISD Chief Financial Officer Revard Pfeffer said at the Nov. 16 board meeting. view article arw

Tidehaven ISD’s Board of Trustees approved a Chapter 313 property tax abatement agreement with a company that is planning to build a portion of a solar farm in the district.  The tax abatement agreement between the district and Danish Fields Solar LLC took several months of negotiation between the company and the district. view article arw

Greg Bonewald, Deputy Assistant Superintendent for the Victoria I.S.D., shared tax rate comparisons to other similarly-sized districts, as well as what a bond would look like with a lowered I&S tax rate and a 21-year history of the district’s tax rate.  “A common theme that we have seen is a misunderstanding that the VISD tax rate is higher than it has ever been,” Bonewald said. “And in actuality, the VISD tax rate is at its lowest point in the last 21 years.”  The tax rate for the district was the highest between 2002 and 2006 and then took a dip after 2006 after a move by the Texas State Legislature to compress the tax rate by placing a cap on rates. view article arw

On November 3, voters in the Fort Worth ISD approved a Tax Ratification Election that will generate $66 million annually for students.  “We are grateful to voters for their support of Fort Worth ISD students,” said Superintendent Kent P. Scribner.  “And, we are especially thankful to the neighborhood and community leaders who helped us by ensuring that voters made an informed decision at the polls.”  The Voter Approval TRE will fund: view article arw

Early voting results show Eanes ISD’s voter-approved tax rate election advancing as ballot counts come in Nov. 3, according to county data.   Some 63.17% of residents, or 12,813, voted in favor of the initiative while 36.83% voted against.  The tax rate election—often referred to as a golden penny election—would allow the district to shift its tax rate formula by seeking two golden pennies, which are pennies within the maintenance and operations, or M&O, tax bill that fund an ISD’s day-to-day operations.    (05)   view article arw

This covers the TRE at Eanes ISD - js - Kim McMath appears to have won the race for Place 1 on the Eanes school board after opponent John Troy posted a concession statement on Facebook at 9 p.m. congratulating her.  McMath has a significant lead over Troy. McMath has 11,735 votes, or 63% of the total votes cast, and Troy has 6,902 votes, or 37% of total votes cast.  “While we had fewer votes, there is still much to celebrate tonight. More people voted in this school board race than ever before. We lifted the voices of parents,” Troy said in a statement. “Our community needs our voices. We have more voices at the table than ever before, and every one of those voices matters.”  Proposition A, which would move two additional cents from one part of the tax rate to another and protect those pennies from recapture by the state, is winning by a wide margin according to final election day returns. Of the votes counted so far, 62.5% have been in favor of the proposition. view article arw

Voters in Northwest ISD are deciding whether to approve a change to the district tax rate along with four district bond referendums totaling $986.6 million.  Early results indicate the district tax rate will not change from its current rate of $1.3055 to a new rate of $1.4663 per $100 valuation. A total of 28,566 votes, or 63.31%, have been cast against the proposed rate change, compared to 16,552 votes in favor of the change. view article arw

In August 2019, the Dallas Independent School District embarked upon a yearlong process to develop its 2020 bond proposal alongside over 100 of its school community members, who collectively represented all nine districts. That process was messy and imperfect — but ultimately, it led us to a 10-year bond package that invests in our kids, with no added cost to the taxpayer.  As the parents of young children who attend school in the district, we are proud members of the Dallas ISD community. But we also recognize that we are not, solely, representative of it. We are privileged white and Asian men in a district composed predominantly of Black and brown children, many of whom are experiencing economic instability. view article arw

Texas makes mess of taxes

May 1607:45 AM

Count on the Texas Legislature to come up with a painfully complicated and inefficient way to repeal a painfully complicated and inefficient tax. Lawmakers deserve praise for targeting the Texas Franchise Tax, but their methods are unsound. The franchise tax, also called the margins or business tax, ranks consistently as one of the worst taxes anywhere in the country. It was the convoluted response to the Texas Supreme Court declaring the public school finance system unconstitutional. Lawmakers had to lower property taxes to comply with the court order, so to find replacement funds they rewrote the franchise tax, what businesses pay for the privilege to operate in our great state. view article arw

The Dallas school board Thursday night voted against putting a tax ratification election before voters this fall. The proposed 13-cent tax hike would have given the district $100 million to fund early childhood education and early college high school programs. The district also wanted to expand a program that pays extra money to top teachers who take jobs in some of the district’s toughest schools. view article arw

Trustees of the Wylie Independent School District proposed a tax rate of $1.13 per $100 of property value for the 2016-17 fiscal year — a tax cut of 2.4 cents — and added more money to the proposed budget for teachers' salaries during Monday's regular board meeting. Trustees conducted their third of three workshops for the 2016-17 budget of $32.340 million and set a special meeting for Monday, Aug. 29, at 6:30 p.m. to receive comments from the public on the budget and tax rate and then consider approval. view article arw

Kilgore ISD tax rate in the air

June 2407:38 AM

School trustees in Kilgore began their budget-writing season Monday with an overview of what is and isn’t known about financing the 2014-15 school year. view article arw