The Blanco Independent School District board of trustees met on Monday night, August 22, for a special meeting and public hearing for consideration of the 2011-2012 budget and tax rate.
Tax Rate Set
After opening the public hearing, Board President Matt Herden gave district business manager Kay Fraser the floor to explain the tax rate.
“This is not the same notice that was published in the paper,” Fraser began. “It is down some based on the favorable sale of our bonds. The proposed rate is $1.04 for maintenance and operations, which is the same as last year, and $0.1207 for the debt service – that’ll be an increase of $0.009, or .9 of a penny – that’s all the increase we’re looking at.”
The maintenance and operations budget is down 7% this year, Fraser reported, and debt is up 26% because of the new bond obligations. Total expenditures are down 5.2%.
Last year’s tax rate was $1.1517. To maintain the same level of maintenance and debt service, the rate would be $1.1842, but the proposed rate for 2011-2012 was $1.1607.
Local revenue per student will be $7,924 and state revenue per student will be $2,954. “The local taxpayer contributes far more than the state,” Fraser noted. “By 2 to 1 or more.”
With the $0.009 increased tax rate, the average homeowner will see a $26.92 increase in property taxes.
“Taxpayers should be expecting a tax increase based on their voter approval of the bond issue,” Fraser said, “and so this is what it’ll be.”
The district had been projecting a higher increase but, with the favorable interest rate on the bond, the tax rate did not have to be raised as much.
The operations rate will generate $6,512,000 in revenue, reported Superintendent Dr. Buck Ford, and the debt service rate will generate $938,549.
Darrel Wagner moved to accept the new tax rate with Tim Nance seconding. The motion passed unanimously.
The trustees then considered the budget recommendations.
“The general operating fund, $9,889,426, is balanced by using $314,000 of resources from the unassigned fund balance,” Superintendent Dr. Buck Ford said.
“That’s going to leave our general fund okay?” Herden asked Fraser.
“We’re never going to go under $2 million as long as I’m on board,” Fraser responded.
With no comment from the board, Troy Immel motioned, Kirk Felps seconded, and the budget was approved.
The board then considered a budget amendment to align line items to actual revenue and expenditures near year end. As the bond construction work has begun, the previous budget would have to be amended for the month of August. With Nance moving to approve the amendment, and Felps seconding, the motion passed.
The meeting was adjourned at 7:10pm.