PISD recapture

Plano ISD President David Stolle and Superintendent Sara Bonser, pictured in a file photo

In its Tuesday meeting, the Plano ISD Board of Trustees approved the $190 million purchase of attendance credits.

The process of purchasing attendance credits from the Texas Education Agency, often referred to as “recapture” or “Robin Hood,” is a wealth equalization mechanism wherein “property-wealthy” school districts must send a portion of their tax revenues to the state to be given to less wealthy districts. The attendance credit payment from Plano ISD, scheduled to take effect in August, will go toward the state’s General Revenue Fund.

Texas school districts who decide against opting for this option can also transfer property to or merge property with a “property-poor” district.

Trustee Cody Weaver criticized the process of recapture, saying, “The only thing I can think of it being is, we’re buying these tickets to a carnival that has already left the town, so, ‘Thank you for these credits. Here’s all of our money; we can’t use them for anything.’ It’s a joke. It’s an insult. They refuse to call it what it is, and that’s what we’re voting on tonight.”

District President David Stolle and other board members concurred with Weaver.

“I can’t believe that we live in one of the reddest counties in the country, and we don’t have people up in arms every single day about this,” Stolle said.

Superintendent Sara Bonser said that the state’s recapture collections exceeded funding for public education and that the district did not receive any money back.

“Where is it?” Bonser asked. “If it’s supposed to be used for education, and it wasn’t used for education, then our taxpayers should get their money back.”

Still, Weaver called the process of recapture “the least bad option of five options” and joined trustees in voting unanimously for the attendance credit purchase.

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