Addressing detachment in ‘Robin Hood’ law tops trustees’ 2017 State Legislative Agenda

When the Texas Legislature reconvenes in Austin on January 10, 2017, the Houston Independent School District’s Board of Education will advocate for three priorities:

  • Stop detachment and annexation of commercial property in Houston before June 2017.
  • Invest and enhance educational opportunities for at-risk, immigrant, special needs, and gifted and talented students through digital learning.
  • Preserve the local control and flexibility of school districts by duly-elected school boards.

On Thursday, the HISD Board of Education adopted a legislative agenda offering solutions to the Legislature that would stop $18 billion worth of the most valuable commercial properties from being detached from HISD’s tax roll and reassigned (or annexed) to other school districts.

If the Legislature fails to act next session, the Texas Commissioner of Education would begin detaching and reassigning commercial buildings on HISD’s tax roll in July of 2017. Detached properties would probably pay higher property taxes than they are currently paying to HISD. The threat of detachment and annexation of Houston’s commercial buildings is now an economic issue for the Houston region and the State of Texas.

A link to the Board of Education’s full agenda for the 85th Legislature can be found here.