School districts asking Central Texans to vote on big bond items

Demolition begins on TA Brown Elementary School on Oct. 17, 2017. (KXAN Photo/Frank Martinez)
Demolition begins on TA Brown Elementary School on Oct. 17, 2017. (KXAN Photo/Frank Martinez)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Early voting starts Monday, Oct. 23 and four Central Texas school districts are asking taxpayers to approve millions of dollars in bond money. People who live in the Austin Independent School District, Lake Travis Independent School District, and Leander Independent School District wouldn’t see their taxes go up with the passage of the bonds, but Bastrop Independent School District residents would see a rise.

AISD is asking voters to approve a bond that’s just over $1.05 billion bond. In total, 16 schools will be modernized or built. AISD officials say every school in the district would receive a portion of the funds to make improvements – whether it’s through technology or updates to the facility. The bond would also allow LASA to move and create a new school at LBJ.

  • KXAN to hold debate on AISD bond on Tuesday, Oct. 24 from 6:30-8 p.m. Austinites are encouraged to live stream the event at KXAN.com or via the KXAN News App or KXAN News Facebook page.

Lake Travis ISD is asking taxpayers to pass a $253 million bond package. The district says it’s paid down debt from previous bonds early – which allows it to take on new debt without raising the tax rate. Nearly half of the bond would be used to build a middle school and an elementary school. It also includes money to buy land for future schools and pay for improvements at Lake Travis High School. It also includes money to put seatbelts in all school buses.

At Leander ISD, a $454 million bond would pay for new schools, school additions, and technology upgrades. The district hopes to build three new elementary schools and one new middle school. Vandegrift High School would get another building with 14 new classrooms to address overcrowding, and the grandstands at Monroe Stadium will be expanded. Leander ISD also set aside $3 million for design and mitigation costs for an access road it hopes will improve safety at VHS and Four Points Middle School.

Voters in Bastrop are looking at an $88 million bond that would raise taxes by about $2 per month for a home valued at $143,079. Right now Bastrop has about 10,000 students and they are expecting that number to grow rapidly, that’s why the superintendent told us they are trying to plan for the future with a new school and improvements and upgrades to current facilities.

Outside of the school bonds Travis County voters will look at two propositions that total $185 million. That money would be spent on upgrades to road and drainage as well as parks and bike lanes. If it passes – you would pay about $24 additional dollars per year on a home valued at $305,000.

Early voting runs through Friday, Nov. 3. Election day is Tuesday, Nov. 7.

 

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