Trustees approved a total tax rate of $1.2546 per $100 valuation, which represents a decrease of almost $0.06 compared to the FY 2021-22 tax rate of $1.3128 per $100 valuation. The new total tax rate is the lowest in more than 20 years, according to a Sept. 14 news release from SISD.
Before approving the tax rate Sept. 13, trustees held a final discussion with district leaders in a Sept. 8 workshop.
“Typically we [approve] our tax rate in October, but we're getting our values a little earlier,” Chief Financial Officer Ann Westbrooks said Sept. 8. “And so we thought it would make sense to start passing our tax rate in September. And that gives us the opportunity to have our tax bills out a little earlier in October.”
SISD’s total tax rate is made up of a maintenance and operations tax rate of $0.8546, and an interest and sinking rate of $0.4. The M&O rate funds SISD’s general fund budget, while the I&S rate funds debt service from bonds, Westbrooks said.
The value of taxable property within SISD’s boundaries totals $18.7 billion, according to Aug. 31 certified values from the Harris County Appraisal District, Westbrooks said Sept. 13. This value does not account for any potential tax exemptions homeowners may receive.
Although SISD’s tax rate decreased, the taxable property values increased by more than 14% compared to the previous fiscal year, Westbrooks said Sept. 8.
“Just because we're lowering our tax rate does not necessarily equal a lower tax bill for our taxpayers because their values have gone up,” Westbrooks said Sept. 13.
Last October, trustees approved a total district tax rate for FY 2021-22 of $1.3128 per $100 valuation, down from the previous year’s tax rate.
SISD trustees unanimously approved the district’s budget for FY 2022-23 on June 14 after discussion initially began in March. In April, the district’s first set of property value estimates from the HCAD were used to determine the district’s proposed tax rate and budget.