Spring ISD’s board of trustees is scheduled to discuss a possible voter-approval tax rate election ballot initiative, known as a VATRE, for the district March 19, according to meeting documents.

What you need to know

If a board of trustees approves a tax rate above the voter-approval tax rate, voters then must consider the tax rate in an election, according to the Texas comptroller’s website. A VATRE must be held on “the uniform election date in November of the applicable tax year,” according to the website.

SISD trustees have not yet considered tax rates for fiscal year 2024-25 and typically approve annual tax rates in September. SISD’s tax rate for fiscal years 2023-24 and 2022-23 are $1.1092 per $100 valuation and $1.2546 per $100 valuation, respectively.

Trustees were initially set to discuss a possible VATRE at their March 7 board workshop, but the discussion was delayed.

Current situation

SISD leaders are hoping to make $12 million in budget cuts for the FY 2024-25 budget as the district faces an estimated $25 million shortfall, as previously reported by Community Impact. On Feb. 8, Chief Financial Officer Ann Westbrooks said the district’s projected budget shortfall is being caused by:
  • High rates of inflation
  • Raises the district awarded employees in previous fiscal years
  • Lowered rates of student enrollment and average daily attendance caused by the coronavirus pandemic
  • Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund federal moneys expiring Sept. 30, 2024