Conroe, September 30 – In the course of trying to beat down any move by Conroe Independent School District Board President Melanie Pryor Bush to obtain re-appraisals of flood-damaged properties to give them some property tax relief, CISD Superintendent Don Stockton, who receives $343,000 per year in salary, plus benefits, purposefully lied and sought to manipulate Bush, as the cache of secret documents The Golden Hammer obtained has revealed.
As mentioned in the article that ran earlier today, “Secret Documents Reveal CISD Anti-Citizen Thugs Williams, Kidd, Hubert, Husbands, Stockton Took Aim at Flood Victims, Taxpayers, Fellow Board Member Bush,” The Golden Hammer, September 30, 2017, Stockton wrote Bush on September 14, 2017, five days before the Board meeting (emphasis added):
“I think the current [Montgomery Central Appraisal District Board members have represented cisd (sic) well. Nobody has let me know they are interested in being nominated.
“Just my thoughts, but I am still worried about the re-assessment board item. We are looking at a potential $13m deficit for next budget year. And, that is with the 5% AV growth! I just can’t support it without knowing the financial impact. I would argue that there already is a process in place for individuals impacted by the hurricane to be re-assessed.
“See you tomorrow at ORHS.”
Stockston’s statements to Bush were false.
The Conroe ISD’s last audited Consolidated Annual Financial Report (CAFR) was for Fiscal Year 2016. In that Fiscal Year, Conroe ISD had $601.2 million in revenue, $570.9 in expenditures, with a net gain of $30.2 million! In the previous Fiscal Year, Conroe ISD had $552.1 million in revenue, $526.1 million in expenditures, with a net gain of $26.0 million.
Even more significantly, the audited CAFR shows property taxes of $379,726,948 for Fiscal Year 2016. Remember that we’re currently ending Fiscal Year 2017 and tax collections have skyrocketed due to the property tax appraisal increases of the scoundrels (Charlie Riley, Mike Meador, Ed Chance, Bruce Tough, Tom Cox) sitting on the Board of the Montgomery Central Appraisal District who set the policy for those increases.
Property tax collections are increasing, not decreasing, thanks for the work of those MCAD scoundrels.
Nevertheless, every year Stockton puts the scare in the CISD Board of Trustees by claiming that he’s projecting a deficit, just as he claims to project a deficit in his September 14 email to Bush above.
That’s why it’s important to look at the Budget for Fiscal Year 2018, which the CISD Board just passed, specifically on the recommendation of CISD Superintendent Stockton. The Fiscal Year 2018 Budget summary follows:
It’s important to note that there’s no deficit whatsoever shown in the budget projections which Stockton convinced the Board of Trustees to approve. Furthermore, there’s an “estimated” fund balance of $133.8 million, but that estimated fund balance is actually the fund balance from the previous Fiscal Year.
Sources within CISD have confirmed that the school district operated at a surplus of revenue over expenditures again during Fiscal Year 2018, which will easily add at least $11 million to the fund balance. The primary source of those surpluses is that Stockton purposefully underestimates the “State Grants” amount each year, as he has done for the past several years. That’s precisely how Stockton has built a huge “profit” into CISD’s budget every year, including the current year.
Nevertheless, the adopted budget shows no deficit. Stockton was merely jawboning to try to scare Bush when he sent that email to her on September 14.
The internal numbers which CISD’s Chief Financial Officer generated on September 14 reveal that providing tax reappraisals to flood victims would only result in a $3 million revenue reduction for the financial behemoth. Stockton clearly didn’t want to give that relief, because he wanted to continue accumulating money and placed the government bureaucracy’s “fund balance” as a higher priority than giving relief to victims whose lives have faced utter destruction.
Stockton is a master manipulator who has gotten away for years with taking his massive salary, building a gigantic bureaucracy to the detriment of teachers and students, and turning the government-run school district into a for-profit enterprise. Fortunately, for the taxpayers of CISD, Stockton has announced this year will be his last. Hopefully, the school district will replace him with someone focused on education rather than high taxation and money.
Stockton’s statements to Bush were entirely inappropriate. He’s not supposed to be a policy-maker. The CISD Board of Trustee is where policy emanates. Stockton is a bureaucrat who should merely implement the Board’s policies. Nevertheless, in examining the CISD’s operations for many years, it’s apparent the Board works for Stockton, not the other way around. That’s because Board members such as Datren Williams and Scott Kidd, modern liberals who have never faced the voters in a contested election, are nothing but bureaucrats serving Stockton themselves.