Frisco ISD voters turned out in force Saturday to voice a resounding no to the district's proposedÂ 13-cent property tax rate increase thatÂ would have helped to pay for more teachers and made their salaries more competitive.Â Â Fifty-eight percent voted against the tax increase.Â Unofficial tallies posted Saturday night showed 11,059 voting against and 7,875 voting in favor. Voter turnout was 16.4 percent.Â Frisco City Manager George Purefoy, who supported the increase, called the election "the most important issue facing Frisco today."Â Â The Frisco United group formed to oppose the measure had a loud voice in the campaign, arguing thatÂ the district needed to use its money more wisely and keep Frisco affordable.Â "District residents have spoken loud and clear, demanding greater financial accountability from FISD leadership," Frisco United member Joe Widner said in a written statement calling for the budget to be reworked. "The voters of this election expect the classroom and teachers to be protected and that the district will work to unify citizens."Â The tax ratification election proposed increasingÂ the district's rate for maintenance and operations from $1.04 per $100 valuation to $1.17, the highest allowed by state law. When combined with the debt service rate, the district's total property tax rate was proposed to be $1.59 per $100 valuation.Â Â Â With the measure's failure on Saturday, the property tax rate will remain at $1.46 per $100 valuation.Â District officials said they now plan to dip into reserves to fund this year's increase 600 new teachers. Â Â With the tax-increase defeat, major cuts in school operations â which must still be decided â will come next year, they have said.
-Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Dallas Morning News, August 27, 2016