Rural Communities Act brings money to area - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Rural Communities Act brings money to area

By Mystic Matthews

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - Thanks the Secure Rural Schools and Communities Act, several counties in our area are receiving some much needed money.

Houston County gets almost a million dollars, Trinity County gets $700,000, Angelina County gets nearly $300,000 and Nacogdoches is getting nearly $50,000.

Of all the money received, 85% of the money is dedicated by law to public roads and public education. 

The counties decide where the other 15% goes. 

For Houston and Trinity, the rest of the money is going to the Davy Crockett National Forest. 

Here in Angelina, it will go to volunteer fire departments.

The Secure Rural Schools and Communities Act...The Importance of SRSCA

Nationally...

More than 9 million rural children attend public school districts which depend on funding from SRSCA.

It is estimated that 15,000 dedicated teachers and county employees either have or will be terminated if SRSCA funding is not restored.

In East Texas...

12 counties and 52 public school districts have lost more than 4.9 million dollars in federal funding.

SRSCA funding is extremely important to rural transportation.  In Houston County, Sabine County and Trinity County, SRSCA funding makes up approximately 25 percent of the total county road and bridge budget.

SRSCA funding is extremely important to the rural school districts in East Texas.  Hemphill ISD, a small school in Sabine County, has suffered a loss of $271,268 in annual funding.

Economically distressed counties and schools are among the hardest hit:

 Median Household Income            Persons Below Poverty Level         Annual SRSCA Funding

      San Augustine County                     $27,704                                 20.2 percent                         $372,917

      Houston County                                 $28,630                                 21.7 percent                         $986,963

      Trinity County                                      $28,757                                 18.1 percent                         $708,381

      Sabine County                                     $29,772                                 16.4 percent                         $921,878

      Shelby County                                     $29,802                                 18.3 percent                         $573,569

      San Jacinto County                               $32,732                                 17.9 percent                         $326,181

      Texas Average                                    $41,645                                 16.2 percent

      US Average                                     $44,334                            12.7percent                              

        (Figures based on 2004 US Census Bureau Data)

 

SRSCA represents a 100-year-old commitment from the federal government to rural counties and schools.  The four national forests in East Texas are comprised of 634,912 acres of federally owned land which was removed from the local tax rolls.

 

County Road & Bridge Public Schools *Public Lands **Other Uses County Total
Houston  $         419,459.36  $         419,459.36  $      148,044.48  $                   -    $         986,963.20
Sabine  $         391,798.16  $         391,798.16  $                   -    $      138,281.70  $         921,878.02
Trinity  $         301,062.09  $         301,062.09  $      106,257.21  $                   -    $         708,381.39
Shelby  $         243,767.18  $         243,767.18  $                   -    $        86,035.47  $         573,569.83
San Augustine  $         158,489.95  $         158,489.95  $                   -    $        55,937.62  $         372,917.52
San Jacinto  $         138,627.09  $         138,627.09  $                   -    $        48,927.21  $         326,181.39
Angelina  $         126,654.34  $         126,654.34  $                   -    $        44,701.53  $         298,010.21
Walker  $         124,819.43  $         124,819.43  $                   -    $        44,053.91  $         293,692.77
Montgomery  $         109,956.70  $         109,956.70  $                   -    $        38,808.24  $         258,721.64
Jasper  $           45,459.78  $           45,459.78  $                   -    $        16,044.62  $         106,964.18
Nacogdoches  $           23,907.74  $           23,907.74  $                   -    $                   -    $           47,815.48
Newton  $             8,580.88  $             8,580.88  $                   -    $                   -    $           17,161.76
Totals  $    2,092,582.70  $    2,092,582.70  $    254,301.69  $    472,790.30  $    4,912,257.39
* Public Lands funding went for improvement projects within Davy Crockett National Forest
** Other Uses included rural volunteer fire departments and other important local agencies

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