Pleasanton trustees hold budget meeting; tax increase may not be needed

On June 19, the Pleasanton ISD held a public meeting regarding the budget and the proposed tax rate. Maintaining teachers and non-professionals, paying the debt obligations and continuing with the facility upgrades are the foremost needs of the school. After some discussion of the status of the District at this point, Superintendent Dr. Cynthia Clinesmith said that there will be no need to increase the tax rate. The district has received estimated appraised values from the Atascosa County Appraisal District and with the influx of diverse people and industries, the values have increased by over $250 million.

Clinesmith also attributed the outstanding condition of the schools to the good planning of the District. Certified values will be received in July.

During the regular meeting, Clinesmith made a final comment about the proposed budget and tax increase: she promised that they will do whatever is best for the kids, even if it meant increasing taxes.

With the closing of the Leming Elementary and the varying facility upgrades that are currently going on, offices are moving so that it is sometimes hard to find them. She credited the maintenance staff and others for creating a positive attitude throughout all the changes.

For those students who did not do well with the STAAR tests, summer school will help them start fresh and finish their obligations and retesting. She will be conducting staffing interviews during the break. Clinesmith mentioned the upcoming summer camps. The District, in conjunction with Coastal Bend College, will be able to certify welders by the end of the summer.

The TASA/TASB convention will be held in September in Austin. Those administrators that attend will be expected to share their information and training with their colleagues upon their return.

There was a drawing of the Students of the Month for two iPads. The winners were Elizabeth West and Matthew Reyes.

The trustees approved the minutes from the regular meeting and the budget workshop, with correction, with a unanimous vote of Clinton Henson, Danny Brown, Blasa Chapa, Jaime Downs, Ami Powell and President Frank Tudyk, Jr. Gerald Guerra was not in attendance. Budget amendments were also approved unanimously.

It is normal practice for Districts to go out for proposals on an auditing firm every five years. The current firm, Coleman, Horton & Company, LLP has been with the school for many years. The District sent out requests for proposals to 12 area firms and published a notice in the paper. Only two came back. The firms were comparable, but one had a greater familiarity with school districts. After careful consideration, the recommendation was to keep the current firm. Trustees voted to do so.

The next meeting was changed to July 17. a quick report was given on the financial status which showed tax collection exceeded the budget and revenue targets were above the expenses.

The board retired into executive session at 7:16 p.m. to discuss employment of contractual employees, employment of the High School Principal and the employment of an Executive Director of Business and Operational Systems.. Upon returning at 8:05 they made the following motions: Dr. Matt Mann was selected as Principal; Tracy Moos was hired as Finance Director and several probationary contracts were awarded.

The meeting adjourned at 8:10 p.m.

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