Taxpayers will see a 4.5 cent drop in the Seguin ISD tax rate this coming year.
The trustees adopted a combined tax rate of $1.375 during their meeting, with district officials saying a change in state law helped guide the change.
“Under House Bill 3 when state funding is calculated by the state, they look at your current year values,” Seguin ISD Assistant Superintendent of Business Services Tony Hillberg said during a public hearing before the meeting. “They will look at your current year, past collection efforts. We don’t have, as school districts, all of the information on how they are going to gather that data and how they are going to accomplish that, but that is what House Bill 3 says.”
The state-provided funding helps offset maintenance and operations costs for the district, which has its own portion of the tax rate.
The district was able to drop that portion of the rate from $1.06 to 99 cents per $100 valuation.
“It is sufficient to go beyond covering the 7 cent reduction in the M&O tax rate — and notice our adjusted final estimate of revenue for the ’18-’19 school year (increased),” he said.
Last year, the district budgeted based on the anticipated $61.3 million in revenue, which was later adjusted to $63.27 million. That increase is attributed to the settlement of property tax protests, Hillberg said.
“You’ll notice our anticipated revenue for ’19-’20 is now $66,776,194,” Hillberg said. “That is a $6.2 million increase over the prior year. Of course with that is several criteria on how that additional revenue has to be spent. All of that $6.2 million is revenue that can be spent how the district chooses, there are many strings attached with the additional state aid that is coming to the district. That is the case across the state.”
While the maintenance and operations tax decreased, the Interest and Sinking (I&S) increased 2.5 cents to 35.5 cents per $100 valuation.
“That is associated with the bond proposition for 2019 that was just passed by the Seguin area voters,” Hillberg explained. “Associated with that 2.5 cents, the district sold on Aug. 14 $34.7 million worth of the approved $64 million bonds. The other half of that proposition will be sold next year with the intent of increasing the I&S tax rate by another 2.5 cents, but no more than that.”
The tax rate was adopted under a motion made by trustee Alejandro Guerra and a second by trustee Ben Amador.