Citizens in the Conroe Independent School District tired of paying exorbitant property taxes are organizing a campaign to defeat the district’s proposed $807 million bond in the May 4 election, setting the stage for a battle between the taxpayers and pro-spending advocates aligned with CISD administration.
“Spending large amounts of money on wants instead of needs is irresponsible and does not set a good example for our youth,” said April Andreski, a mother in CISD and treasurer of Children’s Hope PAC, an organization formed to oppose the bond.
On January 15, the CISD board of trustees voted 6-1 to place the $807 million bond package on the ballot. The proposal was presented by the Facilities Planning Committee, composed of district employees and insiders and managed by the superintendent.
Out of the $807 million package, only $192 will go to build new schools. Most of the bond is an extensive wish list of unnecessary projects. CISD is currently over $1.2 billion in debt. The bond will raise the property tax rate by 3 cents per $100 valuation.
The bonds, which will be paid off over 25 years, will be used to fund many short-term maintenance projects, such as repainting and restriping parking lots, replacing signage, and replacing curtains—all of which will be long gone before the debt is paid off.
“I am just involved because I care about my community,” Andreski told Texas Scorecard. “This bond does nothing to improve education for students; it has a lot of fancy items that appear to be good but, in reality, they are not.”
Bond opponents received a substantial boost in February when the Montgomery County Republican Party’s executive committee voted unanimously to oppose the bond. Republican Party activists Ginger Russell and Kelli Cook, who almost single-handedly defeated a tax ratification election in Magnolia ISD last summer, are now working to help the taxpayers of CISD defeat the $807 million bond.
Election Day is May 4, with early voting starting April 22.