BCISD board sets tax ratification election

By Savanna Gregg

Burnet Bulletin

At their regular monthly meeting held on Wednesday, July 11, the Burnet CISD Board of Trustees approved the order of a Tax Ratification Election for Saturday, Aug. 25, which, if approved, will lower BCISD's tax rate from $1.28 to $1.26 and provide the district with additional operating revenue that will be used for the better of BCISD.

The Board held a public meeting open to the community prior to the meeting, though no comments were received from the public.

“Burnet CISD is in the middle of a critical transition financially,” said director of business and finance Clay Goehring. “Beginning the next school year, the district will begin making recapture payments to the state. This is a major change for the district.”

Burnet CISD is considered a wealthy school district, and because of this fact, is projected to send $500,000 back to the state in the 2018-2019 school year and $2.2 million in the 2019-2020 school year through the “Robin Hood” school finance plan, to be distributed among poorer schools.

“The TRE will allow the district to increase its operating revenue with funds not subject to recapture, while also lowering the tax rate for property owners in Burnet,” Goehring said.

If voters approve the election, the new tax rate will allow Burnet CISD to receive $600,000 in additional funds each year that will remain in the school district, to be utilized in order to reach goals throughout the district, such as retention of teachers, safety and security measures, and the expansion of innovative educational programs across its campuses.

Early voting will take place Aug. 8-10, 13-17, and 20-21, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., at BCISD Central Office, 208 E. Brier Street, Burnet. Election Day voting will occur from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 25 at the Burnet County Courthouse, Lakeshore Library in Buchanan Dam, and the Bertram Library.

Burnet CISD wishes to make every aspect of the TRE understood throughout the community. The District is offering multiple informational meetings at different locations for citizens, even those without children in the school district, prior to Election Day.

Citizens with questions and concerns are also asked to email TRE@burnetcisd.net or visit burnetcisd.net to view an in-depth explanation of the TRE and its impact on the school district.

As part of the process regarding the proposed tax rate for the 2018-2019 school year, the board approved the rollback rate for tax year 2018, an ordinance adopting the tax rate for 2018-2019, the order of the Tax Ratification Election, the Elections Services contract with the Burnet County elections administrator, and joint election agreement, and set Aug. 27 as the date for a public hearing discussing the 2018-2019 proposed budget, which will include different scenarios should the upcoming TRE not be approved.

The Board also approved board minutes and purchases in excess of $25,000 on the consent agenda, resolutions affirming the district investment policy and an authorized broker list, and approved Montgomery Construction as the vendor for upcoming construction on the red brick roof replacement; Montgomery Construction's projected cost for the project totaled $96,994.67.

Also approved were the Texas Teacher Evaluation and Support System appraisers and revisions to the 2018-2019 Academic, Fine Arts, and Extra Duty stipend schedule.

BCISD plans to implement a mentor program for brand new teachers in an effort to retain more educators in the district, more compensation for the BCISD Licensed Master Tradesman position, and accurate compensation for the Burnet High School drill and flag Team director position.

TRE Informational Meeting Dates:

July 18

Rotary Club of Burnet: 12:00 p.m., Sylvester H. Reed Memorial Building, 402 E. Jackson St., Burnet

July 19

Kiwanis Club: 12:00 p.m. , First Lutheran Church, 133 Apollo Dr., Burnet.

August 2

Coffee with the Superintendent: 8:00 am., Parent Resource Center, 202 E. Briar St., Burnet.

August 9

Burnet CISD Staff, 9:00 a.m.

August 13

Burnet Chamber of Commerce: 12:00 p.m., 101 N. Pierce St., Burnet.

August 16

Meet the Bulldogs: 6:00 p.m.

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