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February 13, 2003     Hays Free Press
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February 13, 2003
 

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Page 10 The FreePress Sp0rts/Current Events February 13, 2003. Hays football players take different paths to all-academic team Support Our #fldren Support Our ;reachers Su##on Our Sc#ool gJs00cf the Hays CISD Vote FOR the 20113 R0nd 00Rosalio Tobias BY BILL PETERSON Editor T_TAYS CISD - Some people live their lives in odd combi- nations. Especially intelligent people. Luke McQuage is a senior at Hays High School, ranked sev- enth in his class. He wants to earn a college degree in electrical engi- neering, then go to law school. What kind of combination is that? "It's a profitable combina- tion," said McQuage's father, Milton McQuage, who adminis- trates Child, Inc., a Head Start program in Austin. Matt Boardman, a Hays High School senior ranked 1 lth in his class, used to enjoy studying math, but he's now more into his- tory and government. He said he was baptized Lutheran, raised Methodist and now goes to a Baptist Church. He said he'll probably study psychology in college, then go into the ministry. In addition to the variety of interests already described, McQuage and Boardman are football players, now linked as the first two Hays players ever named to the Texas High School Football Coaches Association's all-state academic team. McQuage, a defensive tackle, made the first team, while Boardman, a kicker, made the second team. Hays football coach Bob Shelton said the all-state academ- ic team has only been in place for the last few years. Shelton nomi- nated the two players, not entirely sure what to expect. McQuage said he had never heard of the academic all-state team until Shelton told him he had made it. Boardman said he knew about the all-state acedemic team, but didn't know if his grades were sufficient. "I think it's good to have guys who excel not only on the field, Bond Banter, from page 1 point. "Anyone can make a case "for needing more schools if they under- estimate school capacities and over- state growth" Bales said. "...There is no basis for the invented term 'practical capacities.' This is not a standard practice in estimating school capacity." Under the district's "most like- ly" growth scenario, the school dis- trict would exceed its middle school practical capacity, in the spring of 2005, with the real capacity to be exceeded the following school year. Bond opponents use historical growth rates, which are smaller than the school district's projected rates, in their calculations. For example, the school district projects a growth rate of 8.96 percent in 2003-4, 10.67 percent in 2004-5 and 11.77 in 2005-6. Since 1999, e district's largg 'aetual gtt)wlh! rate was 10.35, from 1999-2000 to 2000-I. The district's estimates project- ed that enrollment on Oct. 15, 2002, would be 8,722, a 7.72 percent increase from a year earler. But growth this year has lagged behind that number. As of Jan. 27, the dis- trict enrolled 8,621 students, an increase of 6.2 percent from 8,118 on the same date last year Board members also argued Monday night that rigging the attendance zones to optimize capac- ity at all the middle schools would force the school district to bus stu- dents around the district and com- promise the goal of neighborhood schools. "Some people have suggested that we bus students from over-uti- lized schools to under-utilized schools" HCISD board President Laurie Cromwell said. "I suppose that could be a solution to some of our problems. But this board and the community that I have talked to believe neighborhood schools is one of the most important things the school district can provide" On the question of growth, again, who has the crystal ball? While it's true that the district has- n't grown as fast as it estimated going into the 2001 bond, it's just as true that Buda was under a building moratorium for nine months last year. Buda's moratorium probably didn't make a big difference in this year's enrollments, but the lifting of the moratorium has opened the floodgates for builders, who are rushing to the city with their appli- cations. Presumably, they think someone is going to buy those houses. Bond opponents use historical growth scenarios, which is a responsible and rational approach. Then again, some signs point to an unprecedented boom if the econo- my lifts. Which will it be? You decide. You might want to do your own math on the tax impact of this bond issue. The school district says it will add a nickel per year for three years on the Interest & Sinking (I&S) side of the tax rate, which equates to a $50 per year increase for three years on a $100,000 home. A couple points are worth mak- ing. First, a good number of voters live in more expensive houses. And that $50 figure assumes that indi- vidual property valuations won't increase every year, which, of course, just isn't true. The school district hasn't raised the I&S tax a penny more than it said it would while campaigning for the 2001 bond. However, prop- erty taxes have increased much more than "a nickel per year" would suggest. Suppose, for the sake of argu- ment, you live in a $100,000 home and the I&S rate today is 38.63 cents per $100 of valuation. You're I&S tax is $386.30. Next year, you have five cents added to the I&S rate. But your house isn't appraised at $100,000 anymore, because the appraisal district raises you five percent. Now, your $105,000 house is taxed at 43.63 cents; raisflg yo i&$" taX' t6 ': $458.12. Add two more years of five-cent increases to the I&S rate and five percent increases in your appraisal and those I&S bills will come to $536.14 and $591.27. In three years, your I&S tax increased by $204.97, an average increase of $68.32 per year and a 53 percent increase over today's I&S rate. Of course, that's using modest appraisal increases and it's not counting the property tax increases also going to the county and your city, which concur with rising property values, whether those entities raise their tax rates or not. The school district can be counted upon to raise the I&S rate a nickel per year, as promised. But it ain't going to come to $50 per year for the "average" homeowner. It will come to more like $70 added each year. Which is not to say the price isn't worth paying. Again, that's between you and your ballot. Here's an interesting perspec- tive from Hays CISD Trustee Chip DuPont. If you can find a fallacy, let us know. The school district pays $60,000 per portable building, each of which holds two classrooms. Figuring in the additional costs of wiring and a few models that include restrooms, put it at a bit less than $70,000 per portable. A penny on the tax rate raises a little more than $140,000, after figuring that some of the taxes aren't collected. That means the school district would have to raise the Maintenance & Operations (M&O) rate by a penny to pay for two porta- bles. Figuring 25 students to a class- room, each portable holds 50 stu- dents. That means an increase of 50 students could raise the M&O rate by a penny, if the bond doesn't pass. And that means an increase of 500 students beyond capacity - bracket- ing the argument about "real" ver- sus "practical" capacity- would increase the M&O rate by a niclel, which is the increase (on the I&S side) promised by the school district if the bond passes. So, if that kind of growth occurs and the bond doesn't pass, then the district stands to raise taxes by a nickel, anyway, with portables, rather than permanent 'buildings, to show for it. Matt Boardman but in the classroom" Shelton said. "It's good for the younger guys in the program to see that." McQuage, a National Merit Scholar commended student with a 1460 SAT score, said electrical engineering "sounds like a good idea right now." His brother Matt is earning a masters in electrical engineering at Texas Tech. But McQuage said he isn't exactly sure where he will attend college. He remains interested in the University of Texas, Texas Tech, Southern Methodist University, Stanford University and the University of Miami. While he's guaranteed admission at Texas because of his class standing, he has otherwise only been accepted at the Colorado School of Mines. Luke McQuage "I've been procrastinating" McQuage said. Boardman said he has received his insiration as a sum- mer counselor at Camp Buckner. He also signs at Wednesday evening worship services. A soccer player during his high school days, Boardman said he isn't sure he has enough of the game left in him to play in col- lege. However, he said he might walk-on as a kicker if he attends Texas A&M, which is his prefer- ence. McQuage said he might try some kind of intramural sports in college. But that college won't be A&M. 'That's not allowed at our house" said Milton McQuage, with a grin. 424 N. Loop 4 Buda, Texas 512-3100-5;52 ooe Barbara B. Pec! Residence Ann-Marie Pecu Residence Mike Col 496-1 De mh, GRI, CRS 312-0004 ch Sheely, Esq. 312-1944 onnetta 457 /JACKSON When you need your refund yesterday! Jackson Hewitt's , Get all the credits and deductions you Fast, accurate, computerized retums. Friendly service, convenient hours. 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