According to a recent interview with Superintendent Juan Cabrera on KFOX, one of the first steps with the new EPISD bond is to assign a bond oversight committee. How will the select individuals for the committee? “In terms of the makeup, it’s up to the trustees and how they decide to want to select it,” Cabrera said. “More than likely, each trustee will get a couple of choices and I myself as superintendent will get a couple of choices.”
So, if each trustee will get a couple of choices, we thought we would let everyone know how to contact the trustees so that people could volunteer:
Bob Geske: firstname.lastname@example.org
Al Velarde: email@example.com
Susie Byrd: firstname.lastname@example.org
Diane Dye: email@example.com
Chuck Taylor: firstname.lastname@example.org
Trent Hatch: email@example.com
Dori Fenenbock: firstname.lastname@example.org
The EPISD Board of Trustees haven’t actually asked for any volunteers. However, if they are going to get “… a diverse group of people that represents the community, whether that’s a part of town, or what they do,” (as Susie Byrd stated), then why not let the community volunteer? So, if you are interested, LET THEM KNOW! You need to hurry, they are trying to have the committee established by next Wednesday.
According to the El Paso Times, A committee of nearly 80 members has finished their “plan that would rebuild, renovate and consolidate schools in the 60,000-student district.” If the EPISD puts the $668.7 million package on the ballot, it would be the 17th largest school bond proposed in Texas and the largest bond proposal ever for El Paso County, according to the Bond Review Board.
The EPISD Trustees will decide next week how much of the bond to approve and whether or not it should be voted on in November. So far, many of the trustees have indicated that they will support the bond in its entirety: “The committee has decided that this is the size of the bond that needs to go through,” Trustee Al Velarde said. “For me to change that, I think, would bring into question why we started the committee in the first place.”
How does this affect your property taxes? Well, first of all, “the bonds would be issued in three phases, EPISD Chief Financial Officer Carmen Arrieta-Candelaria said.” So, your property taxes would go up gradually (because that has worked so well for what the City and County have been doing with their bonds). Ultimately, this would raise property taxes by 18.8 cents to $1.42 per $100 valuation. A family owning a $138,000 home would pay an additional $17.72 per month (around $212.64 a year).
So, there you have it. Most likely the Trustees are going to approve the entire bond next week and then you will get an opportunity to vote on it. Now we just have to wait and see how much the City is going to raise our property taxes, how UMC is going to cover their projected $15.8 million in losses, and what the County is going to include in their budget.