Austin teachers and state employees will have to pay five to six percent more in health insurance premium costs and receive no raises thanks in part to Obamacare and to the state’s policy of redistributing property tax revenue from the rich to the poor.
This presents a painful, and yet ironic situation for the liberal mecca of Austin, Texas.
Public school teachers and liberals are furious that teachers will have higher health insurance premiums and no raises for 2018-2019. One need only look at the outrage posted on Facebook to get a glimpse of misdirected hatred.
Why are they paying less for more? Because their taxes are subsidizing lower-income communities and schools.
This is how socialism, which liberals continue to advocate for, works in real life.
According to the Austin Statesman, homeowners in the Austin Independent School District (AISD) will pay more in property taxes this year and the district will lose 46 percent of that revenue.
Roughly $658 million in property tax revenue will be redirected to subsidize other school districts.
A teacher in Austin earns roughly $50,144 compared to the average state teacher income of $52,525. If each employee received even a 1 percent raise, AISD would have to pay $6.5 million that it doesn’t have. Why? Because the more property taxes residents pay, the more money is sent elsewhere.
Austin residents pay more in property taxes than other districts, roughly $7,600 on average. This revenue is sent to the state, which then funds other school districts. The state’s budget practice will cost AISD $30 million, which is the district’s projected deficit for 2018-2019.
In essence, Austin homeowners are paying more for less.
The AISD’s CFO, Nicole Conley Johnson, said, “The shortfalls that we’re seeing are directly tied to the losses in our revenue.” Not to mention that student enrollment dropped over the past five years: 4,200 less students cost the district roughly $115 million.
AISD’s enrollment of 81,939 students is expected to decline even further in 2018-19, with another loss of 1,400 students. AISD has kept most of its teachers and kept open schools that are under-enrolled.
Here’s an option for liberals in Austin. Be grateful for the privilege to give to the poor.
Another option is to raise taxes on poorer communities.
But this is the utopia of Obama: income redistribution is exactly what Austin is experiencing, the rich pay for the poor. What that means in reality is that the middle-class always suffers, and in many cases is eliminated.
Most teachers aren’t teaching for the money. They teach because they love their profession. But, now teaching is costing them even more financially. It may not be possible for many to teach due to the higher cost of living. Why work for little money and increasing costs in a thankless job in the public school system? There is certainly no financial incentive.
AISD must give up 46 percent of its budget to subsidize the poor. To do so it will most likely have to close under-enrolled schools. This most likely will result in teachers and other school employees losing their jobs.
At the same time it announced that it would cover half of the projected health insurance premium increases (increases thanks to Obamacare). Employees, like bus drivers, custodians, and food service workers, will still have to pay 5 to 6 percent of the cost increase. Increases and no pay raises will force many of them to find second and third jobs to make ends meet.
This is what socialism looks like. More people suffer financially and work harder and longer hours to earn less to barely make ends meet. And the poor, including illegals who make up nearly half of Texas’ population, receive benefits that they didn’t earn.