Speak Up Austin: Share your voice on bond election
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It’s like a wish-list to Santa Claus, page after page of wants and needs, but there are no children waiting to see what made it down the chimney for this list.
Santa in this story is actually the Austin taxpayer.
Linda Guerro is one of 15 people tasked with combing through a list of needs submitted by various city departments and determining what’s feasible.
"We are looking at bare bones,” she said. “That's what we have in a lot of facilities that we are looking at. The needs are great with the roads. We have tremendous needs with housing."
The Bond Election Task Force has narrowed the list down to $659 million, but city leaders hope to only have to ask voters for $400 million for bond projects, which would keep property taxes steady.
Currently on the list:
• $30 million for sidewalks, ramps and curbs
• $20 million for two new fire stations
• $110 million for affordable housing projects
"It's important that we have a clear understanding of what they feel will justify this bond that we are moving forward with and the amount we are going to try to move forward with," Guerrero said.
She said this is a critical time for the task force, as they plan to make their final recommendations to the Austin City Council in May. Voters would cast their ballots in November.
Austinites are encouraged to meet members of the Bond Election Task Force at two meetings this week. The first is Wednesday, May 2, at 6:30 p.m. at Akins High School. The second is the next day at 6:30 p.m. at Lanier High School in North Austin.