The Hutto ISD board of trustees voted to set the maximum cap on proposed tax rates for the upcoming 2018-2019 school year at a regular meeting Thursday.

Based on the recommendation of administrative staff, trustees set the maximum rate at $1.62 per $100 valuation—the same rate the school district taxed property last year. The proposed maximum tax rate will now be posted in the Taylor Daily Press alongside dates for public hearings.

Per school officials, the rate is merely the maximum allowed property tax rate the school district can now approve.

“This is something we’ll publish—not something you have to adopt. You can adopt [a lower tax rate],” said Glenn Graham, chief financial officer of HISD.

The board additionally set the maximum proposed property tax rate for the East Williamson County Higher Education Center, or EWCHEC.

Per Graham, officials from EWCHEC proposed setting the maximum rate at $0.045340 per $100 valuation. That rate is higher than the effective tax rate that EWCHEC could have proposed, according to Graham. Due to that proposal, the HISD board of trustees will have to hold two separate hearings for the EWCHEC 2018-19 property tax rate.

Trustee Edgar Padilla will recuse himself from any vote concerning EWCHEC taxing rate. Padilla, who was elected to the HISD Board of Trustees this past May, currently serves as Provost for Texas State Technical College.

The first public hearing for both the proposed HISD and EWCHEC property tax rates will occur Aug. 30 at 6 p.m. at the HISD administrative building located at 200 College St., Hutto.

The second public hearing for the proposed EWCHEC property tax rate will take place at the same location Sept. 6 at 6 p.m.

Both rates are then expected to go to a board vote for adoption Sept. 13. Trustees can choose to lower either rate at that vote.

The proposed maximum 2018-19 HISD property tax is level with the tax rate the school district adopted for the 2017-18 school year. Last year’s maintenance and operations rate sat at $1.17 per $100 valuation and the interest and sinking rate sat at $0.45 per $100 valuation, totaling $1.62 per $100 valuation.

Last year’s EWCHEC was set at $0.045652 per $100 valuation, according to Williamson County figures.