Posted Date: 06/03/2020
August 14, 2017 – Amarillo ISD Trustees called a $100 million school bond election to be held November 7. Over the past four months, the Board has reviewed an extensive study of each of AISD’s 55 campuses. The district’s aging facilities have been a focus because nearly 80 percent of schools are more than 50 years old. The Board has asked a Citizen’s Facilities/Bond Committee to further study campus conditions and make recommendations to district staff.
“Over the years, the district has done a good job with the upkeep of our facilities to carry us through to this point, but general maintenance is no longer enough. Replacement is now the only cost-effective solution,” said AISD Board President Jim Austin. “These projects will enhance the facilities and improve the safety for our students, staff and for the community when they visit our schools.”
With passage of the bond, the average home in Amarillo, valued at $121,000, would see an annual tax increase of $48.02, based on current market estimates. The property taxes for residents over 65 years of age are frozen and will would not be affected by the bond.
Even though the average age of an AISD campus is 58 years old, the district’s Maintenance and Operations (M&O) tax rate has not increased in 11 years. Over the last decade, the Board has worked to address needs by spending and committing more than $57 million from the general fund for projects including the addition of 55 classrooms and science labs, a major technology refresh for network equipment, more than 320 aging HVAC unit replacements and many other items for the general upkeep of facilities like water and sewer line replacements, door replacements and parking lot repairs. The current expansion project of nine new classrooms at Palo Duro and Caprock high schools is in the final construction stages.
The election is scheduled for Tuesday, November 7, and early voting will begin on Monday, October 23.