The Burnet Consolidated Independent School District Board of Trustees has lowered the district’s property tax rate for the fifth year in a row.
During the board’s Aug. 31 meeting, trustees approved a property tax rate of $1.146 for the 2020-21 fiscal year, 3.9 cents below the 2019-20 rate. The board also approved a $34 million budget for the 2020-21 fiscal year.
Since 2015, the BCISD board has lowered the property tax rate by 18.4 cents. According to BCISD officials, the new rate is the lowest in the district’s history.
An individual’s property tax bill is dependent on the property tax rate and the property value, which may change from year to year.
The new budget includes additional staff as well as a 2 percent pay raise for eligible employees. The board also increased the health insurance contribution to staff.
With COVID-19 still playing a prominent role in the school year, trustees assigned $405,000 of the district’s fund balance to cover the additional expense of substitutes needed due to the pandemic.
While it’s not yet directly impacting the budget, BCISD administration told the board that 3,078 students are enrolled in the district, 122 students fewer than budgeted for. Along with local tax revenues, the district receives state funds, which are based on student enrollment and daily attendance.
The issue of fewer students is something districts across the state are experiencing due to COVID-19, according to BCISD officials.
Individual campuses are trying to determine the status of “no-show” students. BCISD Superintendent Keith McBurnett pointed out that if the 122 fewer student count holds, it would have “a significant impact on the operating budget.”
NEW DIRECTOR OF TECHNOLOGY
BCISD announced Matt Busceme is joining the district as director of technology. His first day is Oct. 5. He is coming from Humble ISD, where he has spent the past 13 years. He currently serves as assistant director of technology for HISD, which has 43 campuses and more than 42,000 students.
“We are excited to have someone with Matt’s background and experience joining our team to lead our efforts in providing technology services to support teaching and learning and efficiencies in our daily business,” McBurnett said.