The Lewisville ISD Board of Trustees passed a new budget for the 2019-20 school year on Monday night, lowering the property tax rate for residents in the district, though their actual tax payments may not be reduced.
The proposed budget — which is posted online here — includes an interest and sinking tax rate of $0.3675 per $100 valuation, which is in line with last year, but a maintenance and operations tax rate of $0.97 per $100 valuation, which is down from $1.04. The overall tax rate will be $1.3375 per $100 of property valuation, down from $1.4075.
The maintenance and operations tax rate pays for day-to-day operations of the school district, while the interest and sinking tax rate pays off district debt. Though they are both drawn from property taxes, the funds are legally distinct in several ways.
The district is projecting to run a $14.2 million deficit with this budget.
Adding the steady I&S rate of $0.3675 brings the total proposed tax rate to $1.3375 per $100 property valuation.
Though the tax rate is down, property values in the area have continued to rise, meaning that actual payments may still be going up for homeowners. LISD is projecting to take in $7.8 million more in total property taxes in fiscal year 2020 than it has in 2019, despite the rate decrease. However, this comes with a $10.4 million decrease in state revenue, and total revenues are down $486,479 in this budget.
Despite an increase of less than $10 million to overall expenditures, the proposed 2020 budget comes with some significant changes. Guidance counseling and evaluation spending is up $3.6 million, an increase of 17.94%, and security spending is up $604,770, an increase of 21.88%.
One noticeable decrease in district expenditures is in robin hood recapture, listed in the budget as “contracted services between public schools,” the cost of which will be cut by almost half from $34.5 million in 2019 to $18.6 million in the proposed 2020 budget. Ball said at the meeting that the recapture calculations have been changed with new state law.
At the Aug. 12 regular meeting, the board approved a proposal of $2.9 million for property and casualty insurance to USI Insurance Services, which is the district’s current provider. The board also approved $362,000 worth of purchases in new printers, which is provided for by the 2017 bond.
On the flipside, the board approved the sale of 18,400 outdated Apple devices, which are currently in the process of being replaced as part of the 2017 bond. The board expects $1.9 million in revenue from their sale.