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Collin College Trustees Hold Tax Rate Steady

Aug. 26, 2015 – Last night, the Collin College Board of Trustees held the line on the ad valorem tax rate during an open meeting in McKinney in which they approved the college’s annual budget. 
Trustees voted to keep the tax rate steady at 8.196 cents per $100 in property value, which makes it the fourth-lowest rate of the 50 community colleges in Texas. The college also has the lowest tuition in the state by almost $20 per credit hour.
The decision to mirror last year’s tax rate is good news for taxpayers, particularly as the economy in Collin County continues to expand. College leaders say carefully targeted budgeting helped avoid an increase while allowing preparations to expand offerings in service to this quickly growing region. 
“The board has either lowered or kept the tax rate steady for 16 years, and the last time it increased was 1992,” said Dr. Bob Collins, a founding trustee who serves as chairman of the board. “We are fiscally conservative, and this is a solid budget that looks to the future.”
When the college opened 30 years ago, the tax rate was 8 cents. Next year’s rate will be less than one fifth of a penny above 1985. Although annual enrollment increased by 55 percent since 2000, the new budget is based on flat enrollment as student headcount has leveled off in the last year. With new programs and facilities on the horizon, however, college leaders expect managed growth in the future as well. 
“We are committed to serving all students in every corner of our service area, and our trustees deserve tremendous credit for being responsive to constituents and committing to proactive and careful planning for the future,” said Dr. Neil Matkin, the college’s district president. “There are a lot of new corporate and residential properties growing the tax base, and we are excited about new programs we’ve been asked to create to support business and industry in our community. We are also pursuing deeper partnerships with the K-12 schools in our region to create a seamless pipeline and college success.”
Collin College serves nearly 52,000 credit and continuing education students annually and offers more than 100 degrees and certificates. The only public college in the county, Collin College is a partner to business, government and industry, providing customized training and workforce development.  In addition, the college operates the Collin Higher Education Center which serves 3,200 additional students each year in partnership with the University of Texas at Dallas, Texas Women’s University, Texas A&M at Commerce, Texas Tech, and the University of North Texas.