HUNTINGTON, TX(KTRE)- Huntington residents said "yes" to approve the tax increase of 13 cents on the maintenance and operations tax rate. The set school property tax rate will go from $1.37 to $ 1.50 per $100 evaluation. The district has not received state funding since 2005, so 13 cents may not seem like a lot but it will got a long way to help rising inflation costs.
Huntington ISD, Superintendent Dr. Eric Wright says, "The additional 13 cents will allow us to continue to give raises to employees each year and pay for the increase costs that are passed on to us in the form of electric and fuel."
The cost of living has gone up for employees, but the Superintendent says the increase will benefit them as well. "I proposed to the school board that our hourly employees anyone in the transportation maintenance, cafeteria staff and custodial department will receive an $1.00 per hour increase on their wages," says Wright.
It's definitely something that the employees are glad to see come to pass. Cafeteria worker, Dede Gann says, "I've been watching the news about other schools that tried it and it didn't pass, it's disappointing they may take cuts in education, classes, and we don't want that to happen, I love my school."
Over the past two years, the district has lost $660,000 due to a change in the state funding formula. Their hope is to get that money back plus more. Wright says, " Part of what this 13 cents will do is replenish that $660,000 that was lost and once we get our fund balance to the point where it was prior, we can get teachers pay raises and we haven't bought a new school bus in a few years."
So property owners in Huntington can rest assured that their money is being put to good use; and the school district a grateful to all those who said "yes" to education.