The Williamson County Commissioners Court voted to move forward with calling an almost $900 million bond election, approving an $825 million road projects bond and a $59 million parks bond at an Aug. 1 meeting.

The court’s decision has directed county officials to begin drafting documentation and ballot language for two bond propositions that could be placed before voters in November, said Connie Odom, Williamson County director of communications and media relations.
  • Proposition A: $825 million road bond
  • Proposition B: $59 million parks bond
At its next Aug. 8 meeting, the court will vote on whether to call the election with a finalized list of road and parks projects, Odom said.

“I want it to pass. I want it to be successful,” Precinct 3 Commissioner Valerie Covey said about the parks bond. “I don't want to jeopardize our trail projects at all.”

In case you missed it

The court’s $884 million bond proposal comes just weeks after the Williamson County Citizens Bond Committee recommended an almost $1.8 billion bond election to the court June 27.

The committee recommended a $1.68 billion county transportation bond for 59 projects along with a separate $78.96 million parks bond for 35 projects, citing a large volume of requests from 16 cities and municipal utility districts.

“I think everybody recognizes the need,” Committee Chair David Hays said. “Everybody's stuck in traffic. Everyone sees the growth.”

The commissioners agreed that a 2023 bond election could be necessary to address the county’s growth but that it would likely approve a figure far below the recommended $1.8 billion.

“I don't think anybody argues the need,” Covey said. “The hard part is prioritizing what we need to do because we don't have an infinite amount of money at any one time, and the costs have gone up so much."

The backstory

The county held its last bond election in 2019 where voters approved a $412 million road projects bond and $35 million parks bond. In March, the court issued $150 million in short-term debt to finish road projects from the 2019 bond.

While the court has historically issued bond elections every six years, County Judge Bill Gravell expressed support for issuing a bond election four years after the 2019 election at a June 27 meeting.

“I believe that we're behind,” Gravell said. “I believe two things that have occurred; the cost of construction has escalated, but the needs have escalated exponentially as well.”

If approved by the court Aug. 8, the bond election would be held Nov. 7.