Dallas voters won’t get the chance to decide on a property tax increase to provide needed funds for Dallas ISD, but you can still help.

The daunting needs that face Dallas ISD teachers won’t disappear — not after this legislative session, where lawmakers made it clear public education wasn’t a priority. But what can we do?

As I mentioned Monday, the Dallas ISD school board could not come to a supermajority on any of the Tax Ratification Election options proposed, nor on the 2-cent tax swap.

I feel like this fact gets buried in the talk about trustees and TRE: The vote Friday wasn’t to change the tax rate. The vote Friday was to put the change on a ballot and let voters decide if they wanted to give the district more money.

This means that if the voters didn’t want to — if they felt the same way their trustee did, they could vote against it. So the vote wasn’t to raise the tax or not. The vote was whether you got to decide what to do with your money.

As I talked about this with people, something emerged that was quite beautiful Sunday night. On Facebook, a group of us began talking about the many ways frustrated, would-be voters could still make a monetary mark on the needs of teachers here. (more…)


The cavalry, as one Dallas ISD trustee said, isn’t coming for Texas public schools. And after last Friday, the voters won’t have a chance to, either.

Friday night’s school board meeting was contentious, and the proposals for a possible Tax Ratification Election were numerous. A tax swap was on the table. But at the end of the night, no one plan received a six-vote super-majority.

Trustee Edwin Flores attended the meeting remotely while on vacation, thanks to Skype, and was able to vote on each proposal.

Trustee Audrey Pinkerton was not in attendance because she was also on a family vacation, Trustee Joyce Foreman said. She indicated earlier on Facebook that she was against all the proposals except the 2-cent tax swap, but Facebook posts are not legally binding votes in a school board meeting. 

A message to Pinkerton asking for comment on her absence was not answered by press time.

The district’s tax rate will remain at $1.28 per $100 valuation for the forseeable future.

During the public speaking portion of the meeting, those advocating for a TRE far outnumbered those who testified against it. But that didn’t sway any of the trustees that were against increasing the tax rate at all.

A special Dallas ISD school board meeting scheduled for Saturday to discuss increasing the property tax rate has been postponed, largely because of exorbitant cost estimates for the date picked for a potential vote.

“In consultation with Board President Dan Micciche, the called board meeting for tomorrow, Saturday, August 5, has been postponed,” the district announced today. “The meeting has been postponed due to the estimated cost for a special election in October.”


property tax

Dallas ISD trustees will discuss a tax ratification election that would send a potential 6-cent property tax hike to voters. (Photo by iStock)

Before we start, let me say that as a homeowner, I’m about as excited about a potential property tax hike as I am a yearly Pap smear.

But I also know that, like a Pap smear, sometimes things you dislike you do anyway because they’re good for you.  It’s uncomfortable, you have to worry for an indeterminant amount of time regarding the results, and sometimes you have to go back to discuss them because they’re not quite right.

No. Nobody wants their property taxes to go up. But I will go on record as saying since the Texas legislature won’t adequately fund public education, I’ll gladly pay more.

OK, no, I won’t gladly. That was a total lie.