PAISD tax rate to remain the same
The tax rate will stay the same as last year, which is below the effective tax rate, for taxpayers in the Port Aransas Independent School District.
Four of seven members of the Board of Trustees met at noon Monday, Aug. 31, to adopt the budget and supporting tax rate.
That rate is $1.0583, which is the same rate for the 2008-09 school year, and reflects the lowest maintenance and operation rate of $1.033 for a school district in Nueces County, according to Olivia Mixon, Port Aransas ISD business manager. The next lowest maintenance and operation rate is $1.06, she said.
“The board is very proud of their low tax rate and the fact that they continue to not raise it when many other school districts are doing so,” said Superintendent Dr. Sharon Doughty.
The district could have raised the maintenance and operation tax rate to $1.06, which is the tax rate that would have brought in the same amount of revenue brought in last year. This is the second consecutive year the district has chosen to keep the tax rate below the effective rate, according to Mixon.
Port Aransas ISD also is one of only four taxing entities out of 30 in Nueces County, and one of only two school districts in the county, that offers discounts for early payment of taxes, Mixon said.
Port Aransas ISD taxpayers get a three percent discount for taxes paid by Oct. 31, a two percent discount for taxes paid by Nov. 31, and a one percent discount for taxes paid by Dec. 31.
Out of general fund revenues of $20,999,193, about $14,371,535 will be sent to the state for distribution to “property poor” school districts, which leaves $6,627,658 for school district operations.
That is part of a school finance method called Robin Hood because taxes collected by “property rich” school districts are given to “property poor” district to equalize education of Texas school children.
Mixon said the 205 square miles of the district have been valued at $1,871,059,248 compared to last year’s value of $1,717,436,374, an increase of $153,622,874.
The biggest increase in the budget is teacher salaries.
House Bill 3646 passed by the just concluded 81st session of the Texas Legislature, requires an $800 increase for every teacher, nurse, counselor, librarian and speech pathologist. That, added to step increases mandated by the district’s salary schedule, will mean a minimum raise of $2,000.
The median salary for teachers in the Port Aransas ISD is $47, 467. That compares to the median salary in Corpus Christi of $44,849, in Houston of $49,019 and San Antonio of $50,028.