An Amarillo-area school district is pursuing a bond that could be the largest of its kind in the area, according to reports.
Trustees of Canyon Independent School District, which includes the city of Canyon and part of Amarillo, voted unanimously in August to place a $196.7 million school bond on November’s ballot to address an annual enrollment growth rate of about 2-2.5 percent. District officials say, at this pace, an additional 2,000 students are projected to enroll at CISD over the next seven years.
The proposal is a massive leap for the nearly 10,000-student district, especially given it’s the largest in CISD history and over five times the amount of the last two bonds.
In 2007 and 2015, voters approved bonds for $30 million and $35 million, respectively. Each included campus expansions, renovations, and new schools. The 2015 bond in particular entailed the construction of a new intermediate school that opened August 2018.
If passed, the financial impact on property owners would result in an increase of the interest and sinking portion of the property tax rate (i.e. the debt service) by $0.1284, bringing the total property tax rate from $1.27 to $1.39 per $100 valuation. For the average CISD home valued at $186,194, this equates to an annual property tax increase of $207 (or $17 per month). The other portion of the tax rate, known as maintenance and operations (i.e. day-to-day operations), will remain at $1.04 per $100 valuation.
With the hefty price tag comes an equally hefty wish list. A “Long Range Citizen Planning Committee” of 63 community members drafted a bond package that was presented to the CISD board in June. It includes the construction of two new elementary campuses and one new high school; the expansion and/or renovation of eight schools as well as Kimbrough Stadium; and the addition of activity buses and internet connectivity between campuses.
More information regarding CISD’s 2018 bond proposal can be found at Canyonisd.net.
Election Day is November 6 and the last day to register to vote is October 9.