For the fourth consecutive year, the Lake Travis ISD tax rate will remain unchanged at $1.40 as trustees recently approved an operating budget of $100.6 million for the 2015-2016 school year.
The tax rate is comprised of two components: maintenance and operations (M&O) and debt service. The M&O supports the daily operations of the district, while debt service funds principal and interest payments on the debt owed by the school district. LTISD carries one of the highest credit ratings of any school district in the State of Texas. Debt issued by the district is currently rated AA+ by both Standard & Poor’s and Fitch.
For 2015-2016, LTISD’s M&O tax rate is set at $1.04, while the debt service tax rate is at $0.36, for a total tax rate of $1.40 per $100 of taxable property valuation. For the average market value home of $475,743, the 2015-2016 school tax liability will be approximately $4,546. Additionally, LTISD anticipates sending $31.8 million—or 38.5 percent of every M&O tax dollar collected in local property revenues—to the state through recapture, the current system of public school finance which mandates property wealthy districts to return a portion of their local taxes for distribution to property poor districts.
Funding estimates were prepared under the state funding legislation passed in the 84th Session. The net effect of the session was a cut of approximately $200,000 from the previous year’s state and local budget. Lake Travis ISD will receive approximately $4.2 million less per year than it would have received before the 2011 Legislative cuts.
LTISD began the 2014-2015 fiscal year with a fund balance--or savings--of $30.1 million which will assist the district in continuing to absorb the impact of state funding cuts. By managing the use of funds carried over from prior years, the our school board adopted a deficit budget for the 2015-2016 fiscal year. In addition to using fund balance to absorb the state funding cuts, the district has included a Budget Reduction Plan--Phase II into its budget process. Senior staff participated in an extensive process where additional efficiencies and cuts were identified and incorporated into the proposed budget for 2015-2016. Additional reductions will be considered in future years as necessary.
For more information about the 2015-2016 budget, visit the LTISD Financial Transparency webpage.