Weatherford Democrat

Viewpoints

April 21, 2013

Letters to the Editor – April 21, 2013

Looking at the potential financial impact of WISD bond

Dear Editor,

There is a $107.32 million bond on the ballot for the Weatherford ISD voters to approve or disapprove. We can all agree that there is a need to look at overcrowding, safety, and security in our schools. However, there are questions that need to be asked before rushing to approve a bond package that will affect everyone’s pocket book in Weatherford.

You will note that the WISD Superintendent has been quoted as saying, “68 percent of the money would be used to address safety, security, and capacity issues.” Additionally, it is being painted as only a $15 per month increase for the average homeowner in Weatherford. That sounds minimal until you peel back the onion and really look at how it impacts the Weatherford economy.

Focusing in on what is not being mentioned publicly is the ripple effect a tax increase would have on the recovering economy in Weatherford. An increase in ad valorem [property taxes] would affect business owners, new home sales and new construction in Weatherford. These folks represent a large piece of the tax pie in Weatherford. Losing businesses or discouraging growth could affect sales revenue for many business owners in Weatherford.

The question to be answered then is who makes up the difference for the lost tax revenue? The answer is the homeowners and property owners who are left after the smoke clears. Our local economy has seen gradual improvements over the past few years. This can be attributed to the cost of living in Weatherford remaining relatively low in comparison to other cities in the DFW area. Many municipalities, school districts, county and state entities have seen the need to tighten their financial budgets, knowing the financial difficulties a tax increase would represent in a weakened economy.

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