Three Rivers ISD Superintendent Kenneth Rohrbach said tax collections have nearly doubled in the last three years, going from $12 million to $22-23 million. He also said the estimated value for Live Oak County for Three Rivers ISD is $2.249 billion.
“The district is in great shape financially,” Rohrbach said.
He told the school board that 99 wells have been added and their value is currently unknown, and that newly added pods and pipelines haven’t been factored in yet either. He estimated that next year’s tax collections will be about $30-32 million and the district’s current budget is set at $9.5 million.
Rohrbach also said the district will have close to $50 million on deposit next year with a recapture of $20 million compared to this year’s $6.3 million.
“We never used $50 million on this district,” Rohrbach said.
Because the district is currently doing well financially, Rohrbach asked the board to approve of making investments since First State Bank’s limit is $19 million and the rest only earns a tenth of a percent in interest on investments not in the bank.
He also asked the board to hire Omar Garcia from BOSC as a professional financial advisor to help the district make good decisions with their finances. He said the district is currently “riding a wave” but wants to prepare for the future when the district’s income could be different from what it is today.
Rohrbach said a financial advisor is necessary because the district needs to prepare for if there is ever a time when they owe more in recapture than they collect in taxes.
“I’m good with finances, but I’m not that good,” Rohrbach said. “I need a professional to come in and say we need to start socking away now so that when we fall off a cliff you are not hurting.”
In other Three Rivers ISD news:
• Because so many teams and individual students went to state and national competitions, the district had to amend their budget by $10,000.
“We didn’t budget enough for playoff expenses and haven’t had this many teams go in years,” Rohrbach said. “I am happy we are over-budget on that.”
The district also approved a budget amendment of $15,500 for cafeteria equipment to accommodate the new healthy lunch options. Rohrbach told the board that enough students and faculty participated to make it worth continuing.
• After months of advertising custodial positions with no applicants, the district decided to outsource with McLemore Building Maintenance. The district is down to four custodians and can’t keep up with the cleaning.
“Our salary isn’t bad,” Rohrbach said. “Our buildings aren’t consistently clean because we are shorthanded.”
• The board approved of adding a full-day paid pre-kindergarten class and making the current pre-kindergarten class for qualifying student full-day as well. The price will be $18 per student.
• The board approved six probationary hires for the district; Ruben Acosta as band director, Cameron Jones for high school English, Kelly Black for coaching and geography, and Mark Hlavaty for middle school science, Brandy Liberhold for elementary education, and Elizabeth DeLeon for counseling.
• Three Rivers High School graduation will be held in the auditorium on Saturday, June 1 at 7 p.m. and the next board meeting is set for June 24 at 6 p.m.