AUSTIN (KXAN) — The Texas House will take up a massive overhaul of the public school finance system, directing more than $9 billion dollars in state tax revenue to buy down local property taxes and pump in more money to schools.
If passed, HB 3 by Houston Republican Dan Huberty would have to be passed by the Texas Senate and signed by Governor Greg Abbott to become law. Right now, the Senate leader, Lt. Governor Dan Patrick, favors a new law giving every public-school teacher and librarian a $5,000 pay raise. There likely isn’t enough money in the total state budget to do both proposals entirely.
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Earlier in the week, Huberty’s Public Education Committee released what’s known as the ‘runs’, a district by district breakdown of the impacts of any school finance proposal. Many lawmakers look to the ‘runs’ in order to decide whether to vote for or against the idea.
HB 3 would ‘compress’ tax rates – in laymen’s terms, the state would buy down local property taxes – and put more money per student in the basic school finance formula. Those two things would lower a district’s recapture payments back to the state.
The bill is expected to pass but could see tweaks when House members debate dozens of amendments, Wednesday.
Under this plan for next school year, the tax rate in Austin ISD would go down from $1.08 for every $100 of home value, to $1.03. Austin would get an additional $1,750 per student. Recapture, the controversial program that forces Austin to send millions to other districts across the state would decrease by $194 million dollars. Without the change, Austin will send $780 million back to the state through the recapture – or Robin Hood – program.
— Round Rock ISD property taxes would go down from $1.04 to $1.00. The district would receive $500 more per student and recapture would go down from $51 million to $0.
— Pflugerville ISD property taxes would go down from $1.06 to $1.02 and the district would get $525 more per student.
— Lake Travis ISD property taxes would go down from $1.06 to $1.02 and the district would get $600 more per student. The district would also be able to keep $13 million dollars more by reducing recapture payments from $58 to $45 million.
— Leander ISD taxes would go down from $1.04 to $1.00. The district would get $290 more per student. Its recapture payment would go from $1.3 million to $0.
— Hays CISD taxes would go down from $1.04 to $1.00 and the district would get $590 more per student. Hays CISD currently does not pay recapture.
— Del Valle ISD currently does not pay recapture either, but the district would get $900 more per student. The tax rate would go down from $1.04 to $1.00.
— Georgetown ISD property taxes would be bought down by five cents, from $1.08 per $100 value to $1.03. The district would get $825 more per student and its recapture payment would go from $25.3 million to $7.4 million.
— Bastrop ISD would get more than $900 more per student. Taxes in the district would go down to $1.00 from $1.04. Bastrop currently does not pay into recapture.
— Manor ISD doesn’t pay recapture either. Taxes there would go down from $1.04 to $1.00 and the district would get $775 more per student.
— Eanes ISD would get $940 more per student. The tax rate would be brought down from $1.06 to $1.02, making recapture go down from $110.6 million to $95.8 million.
— San Marcos ISD would get $925 more per student. The tax rate would go down from $1.06 to $1.02. The district would no longer pay into recapture. It currently pays $10.5 million.
To find more details on the ‘runs’, click here.