Frequently asked Questions about the Tax Ratification Election

Q: What is a TRE?A: TRE is the abbreviation for Tax Ratification Election. After passage of House Bill 1 (HB1) in 2006, state law requires a school district to ask the local voters to ratify or approve any M&O tax rate above $1.04. The law allows local school boards to set an M&O rate up to $1.17. SISD’s board has set our local M&O rate at $1.095.Q: How much additional revenue will the district realize for a 3.5 cent increase in our M&O tax rate?A: The total benefit will be approximately $393,000 annually. Of that amount, $229,000 will come from our local taxpayers and the state will provide additional state funding in the amount of $164,000.Q: Why does the state reward a school district with additional state dollars for setting an M&O tax rate above 1.00?A: The state system provides an incentive to school districts that choose to invest additional local dollars in the education of their children. This applies to M&O tax rates from $1.01 up to $1.17.Q: How can SISD’s total tax rate decrease?A: School District’s tax rate is made up of two portions, Maintenance & Operations (M&O) and Interest & Sinking (I&S). I&S is the portion which pays for voter approved bonded debt. SISD has received state aid from a program called “Existing Debt Allotment” and our Taxable base has grown. This will allow us to lower our I&S tax rate from $.165 to .12. This decrease will allow SISD’s total tax rate to drop from $1.225 to 1.215, even with the passage of the TRE. Wording on the Ballot“Approving the ad valorem tax rate of $1.215 per $100 valuation in Sweetwater ISD for the current year, a rate that is $.009 higher per $100 valuation than the school district rollback rate.”Results of VoteFor = $.01 in lower tax rate for Tax Payers and District receives $393,000 in additional funding per year.Against = $.019 in lower tax rate for Tax Payers and no additional funding for District.Voting Dates and LocationsSweetwater Independent School DistrictVoter InformationTax Ratification ElectionSaturday, Aug. 25, 2012Early VotingAug. 8-21, 20128 a.m. to 4 p.m.SISD Administration Building207 MusgroveSweetwater, TX 79556Election DayAug. 25, 20127 a.m. to 7 p.m.SISD Middle School305 LamarSweetwater, TX 79556