Early Voting for LISD's Bond Package Begins on Monday
Early voting for LISD's largest bond package in its history starts Monday. The $98.8 million bond package includes two new elementary schools and improvements to every campus in the district, and it's those changes that the LISD school board is counting on will help elect this bond package.
"Lubbock ISD has never lost a bond election, so we're hoping that at least that part of it stays true with us," says Karen Slay, school board member. That's because the bond package is one she says is necessary to the district's growing needs.
"It is more money, but it's the same percentage of our general budget as the last election," she says.
The bond is broken down into three categories:
$18.4 million for new computers and educational tools
$24.5 million for capital improvements for school roofs, parking lots, and air conditioning maintenance
$55.8 million for facilities, which includes two new elementary schools and four high school expansions for the reconfiguration of ninth graders to high school
"This bond election will determine how easily and well suited that happens," explains Slay.
It's those new computers and an upgrade of existing labs that Slay says is vital to the student's education.
"One of the most exciting ones to me is the technology issue. We've got to keep moving forward on that. We've got to keep investing more in that because that's what the world demands our students know and are familiar with," she says.
But if this package is passed, what will it mean to the taxpayer? Using the average home value in LISD of $84,411, the monthly tax increase will cost between $2.60-$5.21 per month.
"I think for the average homeowner it will raise taxes about $65 a year," says Slay.
An amount that she says will help do more than just continue the effort to remain a competitive school district.
"Our students need this and deserve it, and regardless of who's around us or what the school district next door is doing, we need to provide the best possible academic situation for our students," she adds.
Since the improvements will not be complete for five years, the tax rate increase will be phased in over a three to four year period and will not affect the 2004 to 2005 school year. By the way, Amarillo passed a bond package similar to LISD's just last year. Their package was about $10 million more and they have about the same amount of students as LISD.
Again, early voting for the bond election begins Monday.