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Trustees Propose lower tax rate and increase teacher raise

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The Kennedale ISD Board of Trustees met in special session on Thursday, August 6 and agreed on a proposed tax rate for the 2015-16 budget. A public hearing has been set for 7 p.m. Thursday, August 27 in the Kennedale ISD Media Center at 901 Wildcat Way, Kennedale, Texas. {{more}}
The purpose of the meeting will to be to discuss the school district?s budget that will determine the tax rate that will be adopted. The public is invited to participate.
The budget as proposed will represent approximately a 1.80% increase over last year?s budget. The new tax rate is 1.486724. Last year?s rate was $1.514717. This represents a 0.03 decrease or an approximately 2% decrease over the previous year.
The district has benefited from the DFW hot housing market. The average residence in KISD in 2015 has a market valued at $158,401. Last year the average market value was $148,820.
Because of the increase value, a house that average market value will pay approximately $94.91 more in taxes over the previous year.
Actual tax owed on individual residence will vary significantly
The actual amount for KISD homeowners will vary widely depending on the appraised value and the exemptions applied.
There are ways to reduce the tax amount, if a homeowner has not already, but they require application and are not necessarily automatic. Any exemption applied for now will go into effect the following year.
The state has homestead exemptions of $15,000 for every homeowner, over age 65 exemptions of $10,000 and disability exemptions of $10,000. In addition Kennedale ISD offers an additional $15,000 homestead exemption and another $25,000 for the over 65 homeowner. All districts in Texas offer veteran exemptions ranging from $5,000 to $12,000. Applications for these exemptions can be found at Tarrant

County Appraisal District/forms and applications.

Another benefit for the over age 65, taxes are frozen and cannot be increased.
The new rate matches the rollback rate of $1.486724. In Texas, any rate set above the calculated rollback rate requires voter approval.
Board increases classroom teacher raise
The Board also gave the approval to a $300 addition to the $1200 raise approved earlier for teachers, nurses and librarians, making the new total $1,500.
Upon questioning by the Board, Superintendent Gary Dugger responded that this would cost approximately $70,000 but the difference had been made up by retirements and resignations of teachers and administrators this year, that was unknown at the time of the original budget was developed. There was no overall increase in the budget to cover the added raise.

A budget summary can be seen at KISD

Budget Information. (The budget posted may not yet reflect the additional raise nor reduced central administration cost).

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