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College Station ISD calls for $83 million bond, won't raise tax rate

College Station ISD calls for $83 million bond, won't raise tax rate

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The College Station school board authorized an $83 million bond measure for the Nov. 2 election during a meeting Tuesday night.

The bond will appear as four separate propositions: a general proposal, a technology proposal and two athletic proposals — one for natatorium renovations and one for upgrades to the district’s largest athletic stadiums.

College Station Superintendent Mike Martindale emphasized that approval of the bond measure by voters would not increase the district’s debt service tax rate.

The proposal does not include the construction of new schools.

Amy Drozd, the district’s director of finance, said every campus will benefit from at least one of the recommended bond projects, some of which are districtwide upgrades in the areas of safety and security, fine arts and technology.

In the past, she said, the entirety of the bond would be included in one referendum on the November ballot, but new election laws require separate propositions for purchases of personal technology devices and equipment, work at athletic stadiums with 1,000-plus capacity, and then for other athletic venues like natatoriums. All other items are able to be placed in a general proposition.

The total amount for the general proposition is $70.6 million. The technology proposition accounts for $4.5 million. The athletics propositions amount to nearly $3 million for the natatorium renovations and $5 million for work at the A&M Consolidated High School and College Station High School football stadiums.

The football stadium projects include sound system upgrades at both stadiums and field house and press box renovations at Tigerland Stadium.

Included in the general fund is $8.2 million for the first phase of a districtwide Career and Technical Education complex. The first phase will include an agriculture science center for students’ animal projects, a practice arena and classroom space.

Other CTE projects that will be part of the bond are repairs to the greenhouses and the construction of a covered area for the construction program at Consol and College Station high schools. At Consol, there will also be upgrades to the culinary lab and ag mechanics lab, the expansion of the school’s ag facility and replacement of equipment.

Work at Consol represents the largest dollar amount in the general proposition at $11.9 million, including roof repairs, restroom and other interior renovations and upgrades to the school’s auditorium and orchestra and band hall. The work will be done over a series of years, Drozd said, so the school can remain open throughout the projects.

The second-largest item included in the bond is $11.2 million for districtwide technology infrastructure upgrades, which includes wireless access points, cables and upgrades to the district’s network, server and security.

Much of the general proposition is made up of facility renovations, top-priority deferred maintenance projects, buses, safety and security improvements and land purchases.

To help meet the district’s transportation needs, the bond will fund the purchase of 24 school buses to replace existing ones and add capacity. The transportation portion will also expand the district’s bus parking area.

The board approved for a bond planning committee in January to determine the district’s need for projects. The committee met from March through May before presenting a recommendation in June that the board approved during Tuesday’s meeting.

More information about the bond measure, including a breakdown of the four propositions, is available at csisd.org.

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