Board Sets 2016-17 Tax Rate

Board Sets 2016-17 Tax Rate
Posted on 09/20/2016

The Boerne ISD Board of Trustees set a combined tax rate of $1.316 per $100 valuation for 2016-17, reflecting the increase necessary to support debt payments on the first phase of recent voter-approved 2016 bond. This increase represents a 0.022 rise in the combined rate that previously was set at $1.294.

The action took place at the Board's regularly scheduled meeting, Monday, September 19.

The average taxable value of a residence in the school district this year is $333,369, according to statistics compiled by assistant superintendent Tish Grill. The tax rate increase would add $128.71 to the annual tax on a residence of that value.

The combined rate is composed of two parts: The Maintenance and Operations tax rate (M&O), which supports day-to-day operations of the district including payroll, is set at $1.04. The Interest and Sinking tax rate (I&S), which supports debt payments on district bonds, is set at 0.276.

Last month, the Board passed a general operating budget of $70.1 million for 2016-17 which included a 2 percent pay increase for district employees.

Engineers Appointed for 2016 Bond Projects

In other business, the Board authorized the appointment of a number of engineers and consultants to assist with construction projects in the 2016 bond package. The firm Commissioning Solutions was selected to conduct mechanical building commissioning for the district's Elementary #6 (Dietz Elkhorn). Raptor Engineering was selected to perform a district-wide energy management assessment.

The district also will engage Food Service Design Professional and Robert Simpson & Associates as consultants in the area of food service construction. LNV Engineers will be engaged to conduct water and waste water design on Middle School #3.

AP Testing Results Improve

The Board received a report showing that advanced placement testing among district high school students increased in the past year. In 2015-16, 743 students took exams; in 2014-15, the number of students taking exams was 689. The total number of exams taken last year was 1,691 versus 1,562 the previous year.

It is estimated that the AP exam success rate in Boerne ISD translates to a savings of $3.4 million in college tuition costs for families sending children to a state university. The savings in terms of private school tuition is estimated at $6.9 million.

German Student Exchange Program Highlighted

High school German teachers Simone Bergmann and Jennifer Christianson were joined by their students to present a review of last year's student exchange program with schools in Germany.

Students reported on their experiences in Germany with the families they met and the flexible itineraries they were allowed to develop. The also spoke about the visits of their German student partners to Boerne last spring, noting that they were able to dispel some popular myths about Texas and showcase some of the German heritage in our community.

Enrollment Continues to Climb

Superintendent David Stelmazewski presented a brief comparison of student enrollment data based on numbers for the Friday after Labor Day, typically a point in time when enrollment begins to stabilize.

Numbers on the accompanying chart show that enrollment for the entire district is up 372 students from Sept. 11, 2015 to Sept. 9, 2016, a 4.7 percent increase. The total enrollment of 8,252 is just 20 students more than was projected as part of the district's ongoing planning to accommodate growth over time.

The official enrollment for the year as recorded by the Texas Education Agency will not be taken until the end of October. However, as shown on the chart, last year's Week 3 number and the October "snapshot" number were very similar.

Board Sets 2016-17 Tax Rate

Click here to see enlarged chart.

Trustees Assigned to Board Committees

The board committee list for 2016-17 was revealed by Board president Donna Sharp:

Budget: Friar, Rich, Tidwell

Boerne Education Foundation: Gonzalez-Cooper

Dyslexia: Friar

Entrepreneurship: Adams

Hispanic Advisory: Gonzalez-Cooper

Legislative: Friar, Sena, Tidwell

Bond Oversight: Adams, Gonzalez-Cooper

The Boerne ISD School Board's next regularly scheduled meeting is Monday, October 17, 2016.

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