Friendswood ISD’s board of trustees canvassed the Nov. 7 results for its voter-approval tax rate election, or VATRE, which will give the district additional revenue to help it close a shortfall in its fiscal year 2023-24 budget.

The gist

The FISD board at a Nov. 17 workshop approved the canvassing of the Nov. 7 election. The results for the VATRE, according to Galveston County election results, showed 2,724 voters, or 59.95% of the vote, were supportive of the measure, while 1,820, or 40.05%, voted against it.

The district in its FY 2023-24 budget projected a $3.65 million shortfall, with the hope a VATRE would give them an additional $1.2 million in revenue, according to district documents.

Approval of the VATRE will mean the district’s new tax rate will sit at $1.08 per $100 valuation of a home—up from the $1.0224 it would have been if the VATRE had failed.

Despite the increase from the VATRE, the average homeowner should save on their tax bill compared to last year due to the state compressing tax rates across Texas.

A home valued at $493,663 in 2022 that saw its value increase to $560,417 can expect to save about $694 on their tax bill, according to district documents.

Quote of note

Following the VATRE’s approval, FISD Superintendent Thad Roher in a Nov. 17 news release following the canvassing expressed gratitude to voters for approving the VATRE, saying it showed a “commitment to the education of our students.”

“I want to emphasize that I recognize the importance of your hard-earned tax dollars and assure you that the funds generated from this tax rate election will be utilized responsibly to enhance and enrich the educational experience for our students,” Roher said in the release.

What else?

Friendswood was one of several school districts in the area and in the state who had a VATRE on the ballot in an effort to close up financial gaps. Others in the area included Clear Creek ISD and Pearland ISD, both of which also had their VATREs approved.