Jourdanton ISD calls for $46 million school bond election



On Tuesday, Nov. 3, all registered voters in Jourdanton ISD can cast their ballots in the 2015 bond election. Early voting runs from Oct. 19-30 at the Atascosa County Annex II, located at 914 N. Main St. in Jourdanton.

Jourdanton ISD Superintendent Lana Collavo explained the various projects included in the proposed $46 million bond package at a community meeting held on Sept. 28 at the JHS Cafeteria. Also on hand were representatives with PBK Architects with Government Capital Corporation.

The proposed bond includes the following projects:

•Instructional/Campus Facilities, including Career and Technology Education- Ag, Family & Consumer Science, Business and IT

Early Childhood Campus with playground and elementary cafeteria, Ag Barn, Career and Technology Education Building and Art Room- High School and High School Band Room for 60 students. The estimated total in the Instructional/ Campus Facilities category is $17,919,000.

•Sports Facilities Construction and Renovations

Field House and gym dressing rooms renovations, Baseball/Softball Complex with concessions, restrooms and parking, Tennis Courts at Sports Complex and renovation of existing one, High School Gym Renovation- additional seating (visitor’s side) and Football Stadium Renovation- stands, concessions, restrooms, track, turf and entry. In the Sports Facilities category, the estimated total cost is $15,013,133.

•Grounds and Services

Bus Yard- bus parking, office, bay, fueling station; Elementary School parking, Junior High School Parking, High School Parking and Outdoor Eating Area and Districtwide Safety Features, paving, sidewalks, canopy, demolishing of current facilities. The Grounds and Services total is estimated at $4,451,475.

This brings the estimated construction cost to $37,383,608. Contingency cost is $2,896,042, with a soft cost of $5,689,801, for a total estimated bond cost of $45,969,451.

Jourdanton ISD Superintendent Lana Collavo presented the plat of what is anticipated. The bus yard will move onto property the school has purchased and the Ag Barn will move to property they already own.

“We will have a softball, baseball/tennis courts Sports Complex on the property that we own and have purchased, renovations of the current tennis courts, a CTE building behind the high school, the field house and addition to band hall,” said Collavo.

The only piece that is not included in the proposed project is the Performing Arts Center.

At the proposed Early

Childhood campus, they are working on safety features, including re-routing traffic and electronic gate indoors.

“The 21st century thinking is to apply some turf. It reduces water consumption and increases our use of real estate. Once you turf a field, then you can use it all the time. In the heat, etc. you have to be very careful with a grass field, or you tear it up,” said Collavo.

Over the years, the school has done several projects out of the fund balance and stimulus funding they are paying out of Maintenance and Operations.

In 2008, JISD performed a facilities assessment and the school has worked on the buildings for a long time. Not long after Collavo arrived at JISD, they did some renovations at the high school, added air-conditioning to the gym, redid the track and football field lighting.

“We did the assessment and we began the process of working on as much as we could on each of the buildings. We did the single entry into each building for safety issues. We gated the district and added the band hall. We put in central air because we had window units. We have done all we can with what we have. Jourdanton has not had a bond election for construction since 1978,” said Collavo.

“It is about meeting the needs of the learner as we move forward into the 21st century, to update our facilities and more adequately provide facilities for programming.”

She added the board set a goal this year to provide properly maintained facilities that contribute to the effectiveness of all programs.

“Jourdanton High School opened in 1980, so some programming needs some upgrading, We opened the science wing about 14 years ago. We have not done any major construction of buildings in a long time.”

The elementary was built in 1956 and the rest of the school was built in 1953.

“At the football field, we need more space. We are actually trying to be more efficient by putting our softball, baseball and tennis courts Sports Complex together so that we can share concessions, restrooms, parking, etc. When they are all spread out, you need parking in each place. We are trying to be more efficient and provide adequate facilities for our students and our community. We have a lot of people that use our facilities.”

She ended by stating the proposed bond, “is not just for a particular program. It is all-encompassing, including many areas.”

As far as plans for rerouting traffic, they will close the circle. There will be a drop off that comes in the center, circles around and then goes out Peach St. and that will be one drop-off.

There will be a drop-off in the front , but in the back it will go down La Parita. There will be a large area to hold cars for elementary and drop-off. The bus lane is back there as well. They will even create a parking lot that can be used for band practice. The baseball field will remain where it is, but will be reoriented, shared Collavo.

How much will my taxes increase?

Home owners who have qualified for and received the “Over 65 Homestead Exemption” will not see a tax increase as a result of the proposed bond program.

If you are not 65 yet, a home valued at $100,000 will see an increase of approximately $30 per month.

Next meeting

If you were unable to attend the first community meeting, another meeting is scheduled for Oct. 14, at the Jourdanton High School Cafeteria, at 6:30 p.m.

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