CISD trustees consider $549.58M budget for 2019-20 school year

The CISD board of trustees considered the preliminary 2019-20 school budget at its regular meeting July 16.

The CISD board of trustees considered the preliminary 2019-20 school budget at its regular meeting July 16.

The final budget for the Conroe ISD is still up for debate as the district comes closer to the beginning of the 2019-20 school year.

At its July 16 regular meeting, the CISD board of trustees discussed the preliminary 2019-20 budget. Chief Financial Officer Darren Rice said the district is projected to have a revenue of $555.62 million and expenditures totaling $549.58 million, leaving $6.04 million as a surplus. For comparison, the 2018-19 budget stood at revenue of $502.27 million and expenditures of $495.46 million, with a surplus of $6.81 million.


The main change in revenue came from House Bill 3, which was signed by Gov. Greg Abbott on June 11. The bill creates property tax compression, higher teacher raises and funding for full-day pre-K. Combined with the projected increase of CISD enrollment from 62,837 students to 64,187 students, state revenue is expected to be $45.11 million.

Although HB 3 requires a tax compression and CISD must raise the debt tax to compensate, Rice said CISD taxpayers will still see a tax rate reduction from $1.28 to $1.235.


Raises for teachers, nurses, counselors and librarians mirror past discussions at 3.5%, with 3.5% raises for administrative support, instructional support, auxiliary, police and pay group AE 1-3 staff, which include parent liaisons, speech pathologists and social workers, as well as 3% raises for administrative business and pay group AE 4-10 staff, which include administrators such as principals.

Besides the requirements from HB 3, the largest new item on the expenditure list is the creation of a $10 million capital maintenance fund. Rice said he is recommending the creation of this fund after conversations with the community following the failure of the May bond. In the past, Rice said the board has transferred $10 million from the general fund to the debt service fund to keep the tax rate low, but groups such as the Texas Patriot PAC opposed the bond because there were so many maintenance projects on the list.

“We listened to them; we listened to our focus groups, and they also brought up these maintenance items. So this is our recommendation to address those items,” Rice said. “This is funding $10 million per year. If there’s a potential bond for five years, that would be up to $50 million that we would pull those items out of a potential bond and pay for those out with cash.”

Rice recommended saving the surplus to support the 2020-21 budget or to cover maintenance projects, bond debt or unexpected expenditures.

The next step is July 25, when the board receives the certified property tax value from the appraisal district. Following that, the board will hold a public hearing Aug. 6 and Aug. 20 on the budget and proposed tax rate. At the Aug. 20 meeting, the board will vote to approve the budget.
By Andy Li
Originally from Boone, North Carolina, Andy Li is a graduate of East Carolina University with degrees in Communication with a concentration in Journalism and Political Science. While in school, he worked as a performing arts reporter, news, arts and copy editor and a columnist at the campus newspaper, The East Carolinian. He also had the privilege to work with NPR’s Next Generation Radio, a project for student journalists exploring radio news. Moving to Houston in May 2019, he now works as the reporter for the Conroe/Montgomery edition of Community Impact Newspaper.


Texas Commissioner of Education Mike Morath announced in a June 30 State Board of Education meeting that students will be taking the STAAR in the 2020-21 school year. (Courtesy Pixabay)
Education organizations call for STAAR requirements to be waived another year

Gov. Greg Abbott waived the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness, or STAAR, testing requirements in March of earlier this year in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

With a clinical background in internal, pulmonary and critical care medicine, Corry has been with BCM for 20 years. He now focuses primarily on inflammatory lung diseases, such as asthma and smoking-related chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases. (Graphic by Ronald Winters/Community Impact Newspaper)
Q&A: Baylor College of Medicine's Dr. David Corry discusses immunity, vaccine production amid COVID-19 pandemic

Rapid development and distribution of a vaccine worldwide and successful achievement of herd immunity will be key players in determining the lifespan of the COVID-19 pandemic, said Dr. David Corry, a professor of Medicine in the Immunology, Allergy and Rheumatology Section at Baylor College of Medicine.

The county's active case count rose July 10 after three straight days of declines. (Community Impact staff)
Montgomery County adds 40 active COVID-19 cases, reaches 3,000 cumulative cases July 10

Five new hospitalizations and 87 new recoveries were also reported July 10.

The new partnership will provide on-site, same-day testing and results for assisted-living facility staff and their residents. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
State announces partnership for increased COVID-19 testing for patients, staff at assisted-living facilities, nursing homes

These test sites will help the state work toward the goal of processing up to 100,000 tests in the first month.

Texas Medical Center reports only 4% uptick in ICU bed use despite continued COVID-19 case increases

Compared to 1,350 total intensive care units in use June 30, Texas Medical Center has seen only a slight uptick in occupancies since then, with 1,394 reported July 9.

When interest rates are low, homeowners may look to save money by refinancing, which means getting a new mortgage with a better term or interest rate to lower payments. (Source: Matt Frankel/Community Impact Newspaper)
Refinancing a home, police departments address protests: Popular news this week from Greater Houston

Read popular stories from the Greater Houston area on Community Impact Newspaper’s website.

Lone Star College had almost 3,000 foreign students attend in the spring semester this year. (Andrew Christman/Community Impact Newspaper)
Immigration and Customs Enforcement rules could affect thousands of Lone Star College students

Lone Star College is currently unsure how a recent ICE rule will be affected its foreign student population.

Montgomery reviewed its comprehensive plan July 8. (Andy Li/Community Impact Newspaper)
Here are 5 takeaways from Montgomery's comprehensive plan

The plan had special recommendations related to housing, transportation, economic development, community facilities and the downtown area.

Montgomery County's active COVD-19 cases total 2,876. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)
Montgomery County reports decrease in active coronavirus cases for third day in a row

An additional 122 people have recovered, and the seven-day new case average is currently decreasing.

Effective July 9, hospitals in more than 100 counties across the state must now postpone elective surgeries unrelated to COVID-19. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
MAP: Governor expands restrictions on elective surgeries to more than 100 Texas counties

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott expanded the restrictions that initially required only hospitals in Bexar, Dallas, Harris, and Travis counties to postpone all non-medically necessary surgeries and procedures that are unrelated to COVID-19.

In compliance with Gov. Greg Abbott's July 2 executive order, the University Interscholastic League is requiring the use of facial coverings when practical to do so for all summer activity participants, among other guidelines. (Graphic by Ronald Winters/Community Impact Newspaper)
UIL releases guidelines for conducting summer activities during COVID-19 pandemic

The University Interscholastic League released udpated guidelines for schools conducting summer activities such as sports training and marching band practices on July 8.