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EPISD set to decrease tax rate in wake of $668 million bond

Three years after voters approved a $668.8 million bond, the El Paso Independent School District was set to decrease the tax rate at Tuesday night’s board meeting.

The proposed tax decrease is about 5 cents from $1.31 to $1.26 per $100 assessed home valuation–which is roughly a $34 decrease.

According to the board agenda, “the proposed Maintenance and Operations rate is $1.06, and the proposed Interest and Sinking Fund rate is $0.20 for fiscal year 2019-20.”

The I&S rate, which pays for the district’s debt, increased from last year, “due to high debt payments from the Series 2019 debt issuance”

In 2016, voters approved a $668.8 million bond which focused on consolidations of several schools and new construction on existing campuses.

In 2018, EPISD asked voters to approve a “tax ratification election,” or a “penny swap,” for the second time in three years.

EPISD voters approved moving 10 cents from the I&S tax rate into the M&O rate.

This was designed to make changes to the tax rate. “Under state law, it is considered a tax increase, but the real-life effect will be to leave the actual tax rate unchanged, regardless of the vote’s outcome,” according to Robert Moore, a political analyst for ABC-7.

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