Victoria Independent School District

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Hurricane Harvey Recovery

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As of September 19, 2018, VISD has encumbered $6,417,147 in damages from Hurricane Harvey. VISD has received a $3,074,487 reimbursement from insurance and a $1,384,402 reimbursement from FEMA. 
Our goal is to become 100% debt free from the amount spent on Hurricane Harvey recovery. We are currently at 69.5%!
state rep cloud talks with torres elementary students about hurricane harvey recovery

Rep. Michael Cloud and Victoria ISD Announce $1 Million in FEMA Reimbursements

Congressman Michael Cloud and Victoria ISD announced today that the district has received over a million dollars in reimbursements from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to cover damage due to Hurricane Harvey. The $1,033,790 in recovery funding had previously been approved by FEMA – but never delivered.

Rep. Cloud, who was sworn into office July 10, met with VISD Superintendent Dr. Quintin Shepherd, Board President Tami Keeling, and Vice President Kevin VanHook in July to determine the district’s biggest projects; then he pressed FEMA to deliver the funds. Over the course of several discussions with FEMA administrators, Rep. Cloud and VISD leadership persuaded the agency to release the largest of the delayed reimbursements. 

“I am grateful to Representative Cloud for his efforts on behalf of our students, our staff and our VISD community,” said VISD Superintendent Dr. Quintin Shepherd. “Further, we applaud his willingness to take this on and to be a true partner with the District as we recover from this disaster.”

With this latest FEMA reimbursement, insurance and FEMA payments to VISD now total $3,566,140 for Hurricane Harvey recovery, 55.6% of total hurricane damage costs to the District.

“Dr. Shepherd and the Board of Trustees have been working tirelessly to make sure our students have what they need, and I’m excited to see this grant come through for our students and for the whole community,” said Rep. Cloud.

Since being sworn into office, Rep. Cloud has made hurricane recovery a priority, working to secure assistance for cities, schools, businesses, and families throughout the district.

hurricane harvey recovery efforts chart
As of September 6, 2018, VISD has encumbered $6,431,095 in damages from Hurricane Harvey. VISD has received a $1,825,000 reimbursement from insurance and a $320,499 reimbursement from FEMA.

Our goal is to become 100% debt free from the amount spent on Hurricane Harvey recovery. We are currently at 33.4%.

Response to Advocate Opinion Piece - August 27, 2018

In our continued effort to be transparent with our community, there are two questions raised in the Victoria Advocate Viewpoints section on August 28, 2018 and we want to provide answers to both.

  1. “How much money is currently in the pool available to pay VISD’s claims from Hurricane Harvey?”

PCAT has already funded all retentions for Victoria ISD claims. PCAT is designed so that it only retains the first $100,000 of any flood claim, and the first $500,000 of any wind or hail claim. Reinsurers pay the claim after the PCAT retention. There is zero risk of the Victoria ISD claim not being funded by PCAT. Any inference otherwise is not based on fact.

  1. “How much of VISD’s $5 million in outstanding claims does the board expect to be reimbursed from the Risk Pool?”

As of August 28, 2018, the District expects to be reimbursed $3,167,658.72. The difference as claimed vs as reviewed still remains a discussion point between the District and PCAT (Property Casualty Alliance of Texas). We will continue to advocate on behalf of the District to recoup any and all monies due to the district resulting from hurricane damages.

In short, the discrepancies are mostly related roof repairs. Our roofs were damaged by the Hurricane. In this point there is no question or debate. With PCAT, we are working to establish what level of disrepair the roofs were in prior to the Hurricane. As the VISD community is aware, many of our buildings are in need of repair and replacement and a failed bond vote was held recently in an effort to engage some of this work.

We will continue to update with more information as it becomes available.

Hurricane Relief Tax Increase Update

Victoria ISD has been approved for additional hurricane-related reimbursements, affecting the proposed hurricane relief tax rate increase.
Throughout the past several weeks, we have strived to be open, honest and transparent with our community during the budget planning process and how that is impacted by a delay in Hurricane Harvey reimbursements. In the last week, Victoria ISD received confirmation that a combined total of $1,135,000 in additional reimbursements have been approved by insurance, FEMA and the US Department of Education to the District. Although the monies are "not in hand," we do feel confident they will be received by the District shortly.
Initially, a proposal was made for the Board of Trustees to approve a one-year increase of $0.13 to the maintenance and operations (M&O) tax rate to offset the lag in reimbursements. True to our word to be fiscally responsible, and considering the new approvals, we will be recommending to the Board of Trustees a lower tax increase at $0.11, for one year only. This will be made at the August 23, 2018 Board meeting.
We recognize a tax increase of any amount is a burden to our community and we do not make the recommendation lightly as we continue to offer a premier education for "every child, every classroom, every day." We genuinely appreciate all community members who have participated in this dialogue, regardless of whether you have joined us in person at the forums, online through FaceBook Live, or through the exchange survey.
Roy T. Bennett wrote “Integrity is doing the right thing when nobody's watching and doing as you say you would do.” We have told our community we will be straightforward and candid throughout this process and we continue to thank you for being an active participant in this dialogue. Thank you for your understanding in this changing financial landscape. 

school building
As of August 9, 2018, VISD has encumbered $5,991,134 in damages due to Hurricane Harvey. VISD has received a $1,325,000 reimbursement from insurance and a $219,207 reimbursement from FEMA.
Our goal is to become 100% debt free from the amount spent on Hurricane Harvey recovery. 
Stay tuned for continuous updates! #OurFutureIsBright
aloe elementary staff members, visd superintendent dr. shepherd, and visd board members participate in a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate the remodeling of aloe elementary from hurricane harvey damage
Aloe Elementary held a ribbon cutting to open the renovated classrooms, which were damaged by Hurricane Harvey. Nearly a year later, teachers are moving back in and preparing for their students to return in a few weeks. #VISDProud #OurFutureIsBright
Victoria Rotary Club members with Hopkins Elementary Principal and Assistant Principal, and VISD Superintendent.

Members of the Victoria Rotary Club presented a $3,000 donation to Hopkins Elementary to assist with roof repairs in the campus library.

Pictured L to R: Adam Mahan (Victoria Rotary Club Board Member), Tiffany Absher (Hopkins Asst Principal), Leandra Hill (Hopkins Principal), JJ Craig (Victoria Rotary Club President), Dr. Robert Jaklich (VISD Superintendent)