I urge you to vote early and to vote FOR the Spring Branch bond.
You can vote at the following Spring Branch locations today and Friday from 7a – 7p.
- Harris County Courthouse Annex #35 - 2nd Floor, (Spring Branch Community Center) 1721 Pech Road (click here for a map)
- Altharetta Yeargin Art Museum, north side of Westchester Academy, 901 Yorkchester (click here for a map)
Additional early voting information can be found by clicking here.
This vote is critical to the future of the Spring Branch. I know that like my family, many of you moved to Spring Branch specifically because of our schools. Now is the time for our community to ensure that Spring Branch continues to be the strong District it has always been.
The Bond Plan was developed with the participation of over 100 community members over the last 2 years. After a comprehensive review of our schools and other facilities, months of meetings, and campus visits, these community members concluded that there are significant needs in SBISD and developed a long range plan to address these needs.
The resulting Bond Plan, which received the full support of the committee members and was unanimously approved by the Board of Trustees provides
- All schools receive facility funding in the bond proposal.
- All schools receive technology funding in the bond proposal.
- All schools receive safety and security funding in the bond proposal to ensure the safety of our students
- needed infrastructure upgrades and repairs for schools and facilities
- replacement of 12 schools where the repair costs were in excess of 65% of the cost of replacement
- current technology for our students. For each of these 12 replacement campuses, new facilities built with bond funds from 1999 will not be torn down. They will be incorporated into the design of the new buildings.
- for the replacement of buses, including 20 buses that have been on the road since I graduated from high school in 1983
Plan accomplishes these objectives with a worst case tax rate increase of only 6.95¢/$100 valuation. Even with
this worst case increase, our tax rate will still be 25% lower than it was 2 years
And best of all, all funds raised to pay for the bond stay in Spring Branch and are not subject to Robin Hood. In other words, every penny of your taxes for the bond will be spent on Spring Branch schools and for Spring Branch students.
In addition, the tax rate for those 65 and over with a homestead exemption is frozen at the new low rate, and they will see no tax increase related to the bond election.
As I posted on my blog, this past Monday, our Board took the historic step of reducing the tax rate to $1.285 which represents a 52.5¢/$100 valuation which translates to a 35% decrease in the tax rate since 2005. The chart below details the net tax decrease for homes in Spring Branch.
Here are your savings as a result of this substantial 2 year historic decrease (click the chart to enlarge):
Even with the worst case tax rate increase of 6.95¢/$100 valuation, the chart below shows the substantial savings our taxpayers will see (click the chart to enlarge).
Our District continues to deliver strong academic performance and significant tax rate decreases despite the fact that we are a "Robin Hood" District which has required us to send away over $55 million of your tax dollars over the last four years alone.
SBISD has spent two years developing a thoughtful, fiscally sound plan to make sure our community continues to have strong schools.
In summary, it is critical to the long-term success of Spring Branch that this bond pass so that we can provide current technology, safety/security enhancements and for basic facilities needs like roofs, chillers, and plumbing infrastructure for all of our schools. The key reasons that I support the SBISD Bond are
- The District followed a thorough district-wide process that focused on facts and data, and resulted in a solid long-term facilities plan.
- The needs are very real and immediate.
- The plan is fiscally sound, and the overall school tax rate after the bond will be 25% lower than it was in the 05-06 school year.
- Over-65 year olds and disabled voters with a homestead exemption will see no impact on their tax bill from the bond election.
Thank you for your continued support of SBISD and our kids, teachers and schools.
I urge you to vote early and to vote FOR the Spring Branch