Carroll ISD trustees approved their fiscal year 2021-22 tax rate of $1.2686 per $100 valuation by levying the fifth golden penny in a unanimous vote at their Sept. 27 regular meeting.

The newly approved tax rate is expected to add $521,000 in revenue to the already approved budget and increase property tax collection by $915,000. However, despite the decreased tax rate from last year’s $1.2886, homeowners in Southlake can expect to pay an average of $75 more in taxes to the school district due to an increase in the average home value.

According to William Wooten, assistant superintendent for financial services, the golden pennies represent additional funding from the state that is protected from recapture, and every dollar in revenue made from those pennies goes back into the district’s general fund.

“I'm proposing the fifth golden penny because each penny is worth almost $1 million and so when you are a recaptured district—when you give $26.8 million back to the state—the more we can generate for the district, the more we can use for the cost of education,” he said.

With the approved tax rate, homeowners can expect to pay an average of $9,576 per year in 2022 due to the levy of the fifth penny compared to $9,501 per year, Wooten said.

Trustees unanimously approved a balanced budget for fiscal year 2021-22 back in August. This was accomplished by freezing over $1.3 million in salaries for open staffing positions identified as non-critical by the district.

Carroll ISD also used Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief funding to address cost mitigation resulting from COVID-19-related expenditures during the 2020-21 academic year.