Texoma Politics Now

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If it’s the last Sunday of the month, it means an all-new episode of Texoma Politics Now, and we’ve got a lot to cover Sunday.

Next month, voters within the WFISD will be asked to consider voting for a tax change that could give the school district an extra $1.4 million per year while also decreasing the tax rate.
It’s happening through a tax ratification election.

There’s a lot of numbers and information involved, which we’ll go over Sunday.

But, breaking it down and explaining things clearly is something the WFISD’s superintendent said district officials are focusing on making sure voters understand why this issue is so crucial.

“The main thing voters need to understand that this is our way of maximizing state revenue that could be coming back to WFISD,” WFISD Superintendent Michael Kuhrt said. “Currently, with our current debt of 18 cents is a hundred percent voter funded debt. By moving the debt to the M&O side of the tax equation, now the state’s going to kick in their share of funding for schools, which for us is 60%. So basically the states then going to be funding 60% of our current debt. We’re right now, we find a hundred percent of it.”

Early voting starts May 29, going through June 11. 

You’ll be able to vote at Sikes Senter Mall and the WFISD Education Building.

Election Day is June 15.

Also, if all goes according to plan, Wichita Falls city council will call an election asking voters to approve an increase to the hotel-motel tax.

The potential 2 percent tax increase, which is being touted as the tax you don’t pay, would help bring in an estimated $550,000 annually going to MPEC and Memorial Auditorium improvements being paid for by only hotel and motel users.

The Convention and Visitor’s Bureau Director said this potential funding source is not new, as many of our peer cities have it, but it is something very much needed here.

“We have 14 of our peer cities and then we also added Lubbock, because we compete against Lubbock as well,” Wichita Falls Convention and Visitors Bureau Director Lindsay Barker said. “Out of those original 14 peer cities, seven of them are already at a rate higher than Wichita Falls, so it’s very common practice. A lot of cities do this and we’re competing against those cities.”

If approved in a Nov. 5 election, the city tax rate currently at 7 percent would go to 9 percent bringing the combined state and city tax to 15 percent equating to $3 extra on a $150 room for example.

Join us Sunday at 7:30 a.m. for Texoma Politics Now, right here on KFDX.

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