The McKinney ISD Board of Trustees may change its election dates and length of Trustee terms in response to actions taken by the State Legislature and the McKinney City Council.
MISD Trustees currently serve three-year, staggered terms with elections every year in May and two or three Trustees up for election each year. If the Board decides to make a change, Trustees could serve four-year terms, with elections held every two years and three or four Trustees up in each election.
The change is being discussed due to the passage by the Legislature of Senate Bill 100, which changed many of the rules governing local elections. SB 100 prompted the McKinney City Council’s vote to call a charter amendment election on November 8 to ask voters to change its members’ terms from three years to four years with elections in May of every other year in odd numbered years.
Currently, the MISD and City of McKinney hold joint elections each May, which allows them to share the costs and adds convenience for voters. In addition, School District’s in Texas are only authorized to hold May elections if they do so jointly with a municipality. Otherwise, they must hold their elections in November of even numbered years. If the City’s charter amendment election is successful, MISD will lose its joint election partner. This leaves the District with three potential fixes: (1) Change its terms to four years with joint elections in May of odd numbered years and continue holding joint elections with the City, (2) Change its terms to four years and move the elections to November of even numbered years, or (3) Try to continue with three year terms with elections held in May every year with other municipalities. This third option would be very problematic as it would require the District to search for a different joint election partner every year with one or more of the other six cities with land in the MISD. This third option would only help defray the costs of voting locations within those partner cities, leaving MISD to cover the cost of the voting locations within the City of McKinney.
Board Member Curtis Rippee noted a few of the upsides and downsides of such a change at the Board’s Tuesday night work session. On one hand, he said, it would allow board members to serve for four years instead of three, allowing members to gain more experience and bring continuity to the board. On the flip side, it could potentially mean four board members getting voted off in one election.
Trustees did not seem eager to change their current system, but are reviewing their options and will likely wait to make a final decision until after the City’s Nov. 8 charter amendment election.
For information on the City’s charter amendment election, go to www.mckinneytexas.org/vote.