After including additional funding sources, the anticipated deficit for the coming school year is $885,000. The deficit from the 2020-21 school year finished around $3 million, which was in large part due to the decrease in enrollment, Chief Operations Officer Ed Ramos said.
“We actually lost 1,200 students as a result of the pandemic, and that was not only a phenomenon that we faced but that also occurred throughout the state of Texas,” he said.
Ramos added the school district should fare better financially in the 2021-22 school year due to cost-reducing measures, including $2 million in reductions of the department budget, almost $7 million in staff reductions and $500,000 in substitute costs.
The board also approved a tax rate decrease for 2021-22.
The PfISD tax rate for 2020-21 of $1.4223 per $100 of valuation will fall to $1.408 as a result of the maximum compressed tax rate required by the Texas Education Agency. The maximum compressed rate stems from the Texas Legislature passing House Bill 3, which applies to school districts' maintenance and operations portions of their tax rates, according to information from the TEA.
For the average property value in the PfISD school district, property owners would pay $4,352 in school district taxes for the year.
“The total tax rate will still be lower than what it's ever been in the past 21 years,” Ramos said.
The breakdown of the new tax bill will be $0.948 for maintenance and operations and $0.46 for payment on principal and interest on debts.
Pflugerville voters will have the opportunity to approve the new tax rate during the November election. If that vote does not pass, the projected deficit for the 2021-22 school year would increase to $7.9 million.