Alvarado ISD’s board of trustees had a handful of chores to complete at its Aug. 17 meeting.

The board approved everything from a student code of conduct and substitute teacher pay scale to a reading program and water heater in the junior high field house.

The board also considered the tax rate and budget.

The district’s current budget is based on a proposed tax rate of $1.28 – $1.04 for maintenance and operations and $0.24 for debt service – the exact rate it was a year ago.

However, under a mandate from the state of Texas, the district was required to have a motion to approve the tax rate read as follows: “I move that the property tax rate be increased by the adoption of $1.28, which is effectively a 7.66 percent increase in the tax rate.”

While the rate of $1.28 is the same, property values in Alvarado increased during the past year. Residents who have seen an increase in their property value will pay more taxes, but the rate is unchanged.

“This required language is misleading and does not clearly reflect the actions of the school board,” Superintendent Chester Juroska said. “The tax rate actually stayed the same. The new laws convey little about the district’s tax rate. The proposed tax rates will not change for 2009-2010.”

The district has set Aug. 31 as the date for a law-mandated public hearing on the proposed tax rate. The hearing will begin at 7 p.m.

In other business, the board approved:

• the proposed tax rate for Hill College

• the purchasing guidelines prepared by the AISD finance department

• a $1.40 flat fee per RevTrak transaction

• the secondary student code of conduct

• My Reading Coach program for Lillian, Elementary North, Elementary South and Alvarado Junior High

• a water heater for the Alvarado Junior High field house

• custodial services from Faulk

• special education contracted services

• special education speech pathologist

• the 2009-2010 substitute pay schedule

• the employment of Pattilyn Wilkinson, Margo Moore, Katy Thornton and Linda Smaltz

Tommy Brown is the public information officer for Alvarado ISD. Contact him at 817-783-6851.