School propositions get thumbs up
By MIKE EDDLEMAN
All four propositions in the $491.7 million bond package Liberty Hill ISD presented to voters Saturday were approved, setting a course expected to help the district keep pace with a student enrollment projected to double over the next five years.
“I’m excited for the future of Liberty Hill and definitely glad the bond election is behind us,” said Superintendent Steve Snell. “Now the real work begins. It makes me feel good. The community of Liberty Hill shows overwhelming support for our school district. We realize the amount of money on the ballot this May was overwhelming to think about.”
Proposition A passed with 67 percent of the vote (1,391-671) and totals $457.7 million, making up most of the total bond package. It includes funds for four new schools – two elementary, a middle and the district’s second high school – campus renovations and expansions to five current campuses, planning funds for additional new campuses, land purchases and a variety of other infrastructure projects.
The $8 million approved in Proposition B is for new technology devices, and passed with 68 percent of the vote (1,430-657).
Propositions C and D, which dealt with athletic facilities didn’t receive the overwhelming support the first two propositions did, but C passed with 57 percent of the vote ( 1,190-899) and D with 51 percent ( 1,068-1,019).
“The propositions followed trends statewide,” Snell said. “I think the people who came out and voted early made the difference. You never want to leave it up to the Saturday election day, you want to get people out there and make their vote known early. The trends kind of brought things back on Election Day.”
Proposition C will provide $6 million for expansion of facilities at Panther Stadium, and D secured $20 million for a new stadium on the second high school campus.
With the approval, the district will now begin the work of putting the funds to work on the various projects.
“We will start putting out RFQs (requests for qualifications) for architects and construction,” Snell said. “We will start to figure out how many bonds we need to sell this summer to get our summer and 2021 projects underway.”
The first projects with the new bond funds, will be elementary campus expansions at Louine Noble and Liberty Hill Elementary.
“This summer, we’ll bid the jobs to start the expansion of the two elementary schools, that is the first thing on the list,” Snell said.
Happy with the community support, Snell was thankful to the school board for going forward with the election, and the long-range planning committee for the work put into developing the detailed plan.
“Those 60-plus people analyzed all the needs, all the growth projections and came up with the bond package to present to our board and ultimately to the community,” Snell said. “I just can’t thank them enough for the work they did. They put lots of time and energy into the future of the district.”