The San Marcos CISD board of trustees passed an operating budget of $102.93 million in expenditures for fiscal year 2024-25 in June.

This leaves the district with a projected shortfall of $17.62 million.

What you need to know

During a June 17 board meeting, trustees passed the proposed $102.93 million budget, which includes local revenues that will be funded based on a total tax rate of $0.9708 per $100 valuation. This rate is made up of a maintenance and operations rate of $0.6802 per $100 valuation as well as a debt service rate of $0.2906 per $100 valuation. This total rate is $0.0207 lower than the rate of $0.9915 ratified for FY 2023-24.

The $102.93 million budget will be funded by $960,000 in federal revenue, $14.11 million in state revenue and $70.24 million in local revenue, per projections for the fiscal year available from the district.

The projected $17.62 million shortfall will be paid out of the district's reserve funds, per the budget approved by the board.

How we got here

The projected shortfall for FY 2024-25 was reduced by about $3.82 million after trustees approved the use of attrition, or freezing unfilled positions, as a cost-saving measure in April.

Superintendent Michael Cardona said in April the decision was necessary for efficiency of staffing in the district while facing increasing costs of operation.

“I mean, ... it's either we find ways to do more with the people we have in the buildings, [and] as people attrition out we become more efficient with some of the curriculums and some of the things that we can do,” Cardona said. “And also reward the teachers who are working really hard inside the building. But you can't do that when 93% of your budget is people, and the cost of everything is going up.”