GISD main bond measure passes: What’s next

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With the passing of Proposition A in the Georgetown ISD bond election, GISD residents can expect the district to begin working on projects immediately, district officials say.

On Tuesday voters approved Proposition A, which sought $150.5 million for 12 projects that addressed safety and security, technology upgrades, and investments into fine arts, among other district needs.

GISD director of communications Melinda Brasher said the district is looking to immediately purchase the materials needed to install new athletic turf and tracks in all of the middle schools except Wagner. She said the district would like to have the fields ready for spring competitions which begin around March.

The district will also immediately purchase new radio systems that directly connect GISD with Georgetown first responders in the occurrence of an emergency, Brasher said. The radio systems are part of the safety and security portion of the bond earmarked at $9.1 million.

In addition the district began designing two new elementary schools that will help with overflow and predicted growth. The schools were designed with funding from the 2015 bond and will be completed with money from the 2018 bond, which earmarked $74 million for the projects. Construction of two new elementary schools is expected to begin in spring 2019, Brasher said.

District data predicts that in five years GISD enrollment—which is at about 11,800 students today—will increase by 20 percent, adding about 2,300 additional students.

The first school will be built near the Wolf Ranch Town Center where students who are zoned to attend Pickett Elementary School will be rezoned for the new building, Brasher said.

A second school will be built along Rockride Lane in the southeast corner of the district to address the overpopulation of Carver Elementary School and elevated growth in the area, Brasher said. Data show that Carver and Pickett elementary schools will be over capacity as early as the 2019-2020 school year.

Part of the funding will also go toward designing an expansion of Ford Elementary school, located along Williams Drive. Brasher said the district plans to add eight classrooms that will allow for 150-160 additional students.

Selling bonds

The district will determine how many bonds will be sold based on immediate projects, Brasher said. Not all bonds are sold at once but on a needed basis, she added.

In December the district will ask the GISD board of trustees to authorize the selling the bonds based on optimal market rate, Brasher said. The funds are expected to be available by February, she added.

Failed Proposition B

A second proposition looked to build a district swim facility that would be jointly designed, constructed and used by GISD and the YMCA of Georgetown.

With the failure to pass the $15.5 million proposition, Brasher said the project has been taken off the table, and the district is not looking to fund the project through other means. Brasher added that the district will continue to keep discussion with the YMCA open in order to potentially bring back a more favorable option for future voters.

Proposition A passed with 67.43 percent of the vote. Proposition B failed with 48.67 percent of the votes in favor of the facility. 73,786 ballots were cast.

For all election results visit communityimpact.com/georgetown/vote

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Ali Linan
Ali Linan began covering Georgetown for Community Impact Newspaper in 2018. Her reporting focuses on education and Williamson County. Ali hails from El Paso and graduated from Syracuse University in 2017.
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