BELTON, Texas (FOX 44) – The Belton Independent School District’s Board of Trustees approved a new budget and lowered the tax rate by two cents at its regular meeting on Monday.

The district said in a press release that the $141,757,085 budget includes additional funding for new staff associated with the district’s growth in student enrollment, salary increases approved by the Board in June and operational inflationary costs. 

The budget accounts for the pay raise trustees approved in June to help the district recruit and retain staff. The compensation plan gave a four percent increase for teachers and professional staff, a six percent increase for paraprofessionals and auxiliary staff, and a two percent increase for administrators.

At Monday’s meeting, the Board also adopted a decrease in the district’s tax rate for the fourth year in a row. The adopted rate of $1.3371 per $100 assessment includes $0.9429 per $100 assessment for maintenance and operations and $0.3942 per $100 assessment for debt service. This is a two-cent decrease from last year’s tax rate.

The Board also approved the hiring of two companies for architectural services for projects funded by the May 2022 bond. O’Connell Robertson will work on additions and renovations at Belton High School and the Fine Arts expansion at Lake Belton Middle School. PBK Architects will work on the addition at Southwest Elementary. 

The district says the Board also appointed twleve members to the newly-formed Citizens’ Bond Oversight Committee. This committee of parents, staff, students and community members will review bond projects, spending and schedules during the implementation phase of the May 2022 bond projects.