EPISD is shrinking even faster than before.
A recent report to the board of trustees indicated that total enrollment as of August 27, 2018 was 57,103 students.
Enrollment for the 2014-2015 school year was 61,151
2015-2016 school year was 60,066 a decrease of 1,085 students
2016-2017 school year was 59,750 a decrease of 316 students
2017-2018 school year was 58,549 a decrease of 1,201 students
With the August enrollment at 57,103 they will have another decrease of 1,446 students this year.
Will we see their budget getting smaller?
We deserve better
I believe EPISD will be increasing the budget. Without drastically reducing Central Office positions such as all the new mini directors and “new” initiative administrators, as well as the added “executive assistants”, they will be faced with forcing retirements, no raises, no step increases, no longevity increases for teachers and staff.
Remember the number of kids in El Paso County is also getting smaller in the next five years. Even if kids don’t jump to charters (which they will), EPISD will see an additional 10% drop (=5,700 kids) in about 3-4 years. Strong leadership would start planning now.
Unfortunately, EPISD doesn’t have strong leadership. A pathetic marketing campaign won’t solve this tsunami.
Leadership is not the word I’d apply to this bunch. While they want us to believe that this penny swap will have “zero impact,” they exhibit all the leadership of a gaggle of clowns. https://www.elpasotimes.com/story/news/education/episd/2018/09/25/teachers-union-leader-ross-moore-says-episd-trustee-mickey-loweree-filed-complaint-against-him/1416785002/
Brutus or others,
The penny swap moves more of our tax dollars to M&O. Does EPISD keep the higher M&O tax rate in future years?
If so, does that mean that our taxes do essentially increase in future years?
Appreciate any input on this one.
Yes the M&O rate will remain elevated.
Also by taking money away from the interest and sinking fund (I&S) rate they will not have enough money to pay for the bonds. If I am correct there is no provision for a rollback election if they raise the I&S rate next year.
I’m going to oversimplify but it basically moves money from the bucket that covers debt service costs on the mega bond to bucket that covers maintenance and operations. The state for some crazy reason rewards them with extra money. The problem is because of the megabond debt service costs will increase. So expect the district to come back in a year or to with a tax increase to pay debt service rather than ask us to swap pennies back. We had a penny swap a few years ago The was going to cover deferred maintenance—based on the bond issue campaign, I guess that was a total lie since lack of maintenance was one of the justifications for the mega bond. I plan to vote no. When you max out your credit, it doesn’t make sense to allocate most of your income to spending more instead of paying for the debt you have.
Thank you for these comments. My “no” vote is confirmed. The penny swap will lead to an increase in taxes. The question is “when?”
If my memory serves me correctly the I&O fund has a State limit on the amount that can be borrowed. I think it is fifty cents. There is no voter approval needed for this money. Therefore if a district takes 10 cents out of the I&O fund it opens another window where the district can raise taxes, without voter approval for this extra 10 cents. I think it actually increases their credit rating as it gives them access to more money without voter approval.
We received the slick, expensive mailer yesterday. A one-time bonus stipend for employees is at the top of the list of uses of the money. This is a blatant ploy to buy votes and should be prosecuted.
AND the mailer says that the money WOULD be used for this $750 bonus, while all the other options are described as things the EPISD COULD do. So a pretty clear indication of what it’s all about.
They lose money on every deal they do but they make it up on volume.
“The Penny Swap gives the District the opportunity to provide a $750 holiday stipend for employees without costing homeowners any additional taxes,” said EPISD Board President Trent Hatch.
We now know what EPISD considers to be the cost to buy a vote.
“Our focus needs to be working to support our students, to look at our district and the successes we’ve had. We’ve had a lot of successes over the past few months. Test results, tech, great programs,” Hatch said. “We have a great story and we’re doing really good things. Our focus should be to continue that and not be distracted.”
Hatch is a major dud. We deserve better.