AP NEWS

AISD bond plans proceed after voters’ OK

November 8, 2018

Now that Alvin ISD voters have approved a $480.5 million bond to add and improve campuses and boost security, the first projects to be tackled will include construction of an additional junior high school and the rebuilding of E.C. Mason Elementary.

“The district anticipates beginning the first of the projects, including the rebuild of E.C. Mason Elementary and Junior High No. 8, during the first quarter of 2019,” Assistant Superintendent Daniel Combs said.

Both those projects will be in the city of Manvel.

“Alvin ISD has target plans regarding when we plan to open each campus that was included in the approved 2018 bond package. Regarding the first steps, we are working through those details currently,” Combs said.

Construction can take from 15-18 months for an elementary school and approximately 24 months for a junior high school, Superintendent James “Buck” Gilcrease said.

Gilcrease said that voter approval of the bond package on Nov. 6 enabled the district to avoid unpopular solutions to crowding such as redrawing attendance boundaries and installling more portable buildings at existing campuses.

The district’s enrollment in February was almost 25,000, reflecting an increase of 2,818 students in two years.

“All the demographic studies project that the growth rate will stay the same; so you try to plan for that,” Gilcrease said. “In four to five years, the district will have to reassess the situation, but it’s difficult in fast-growth districts to project out more than three-to-five years.”

Overall, funds from the bond package will largely focus on constructing new schools, including two new elementary campuses, two junior high schools and a new high school.

Safety and security measures to covered through the bond package include upgrades to police department equipment, security cameras, campus fencing, access control and emergency response systems. The district will also acquire land for future school sites and build a replacement building for Alvin Primary School. Harby Junior High School will be expanded and renovated.

In the election, Alvin ISD voters also approved a separate proposition to authorize a 13 cent increase in the maintenance-and-operations portion of the tax rate, now $1.04, while authorizing a drop by the same amount in the 41 cent debt service part of the rate. The result is that the current tax rate of $1.45 per $100 valuation will remain the same.

The bond package received support from 68 percent of voters, while the property tax measure received 53 percent approval.

AP RADIO
Update hourly