Houston Matters

HISD Faces $107 Million Budget Shortfall

Houston Independent School District anticipates a $107 million budget shortfall next year. The district contends it’s due to Chapter 41 of the Texas Education Code, which requires “property wealthy” school districts to return significant funding back to the state to help less well-off districts. HISD and hundreds of other districts have sued the state over […]

Houston Independent School District anticipates a $107 million budget shortfall next year. The district contends it’s due to Chapter 41 of the Texas Education Code, which requires “property wealthy” school districts to return significant funding back to the state to help less well-off districts. HISD and hundreds of other districts have sued the state over this so-called “Robin Hood” payback scenario.

A state district judge ruling from 2014 siding with the districts is being appealed by the state. Meanwhile, lawmakers had previously sought to avoid this scenario for the Houston and Dallas school districts, but did not do so during the last legislative session. So this would be the first time the district may reach the revenue level triggering the payback.

We talk with Houston Chronicle education reporter Ericka Mellon about the controversial payback scenario and what options exist for HISD to address this shortfall as the district prepares a budget for passage in June.

MORE: HISD Bonus Program at Risk Amid Budget Problems (Houston Chronicle, Feb. 3, 2016)

Share