The Fort Bend Chamber of Commerce Government Affairs Team (GAT) advocates and serves as proxy on behalf of the membership on issues affecting job creation, economic development and the overall vitality of the region. Issues that impact the interests of the greater Fort Bend business community, economic development within Fort Bend County or members of the Fort Bend Chamber of Commerce members directly are given consideration. After careful and thoughtful analysis, the Government Affairs Team recommended support of the 2018 FBISD (FBISD) Bond Proposal at the September 18th Fort Bend Chamber Board of Directors meeting, They further recommended that the Chamber educate its members on the bond proposal and work to enlist their active support and influence. The Board of Directors passed the resolution unanimously.
On August 13, 2018, the FBISD Board of Trustees unanimously called for a $992.6 million bond referendum to be held on November 6, 2018. If approved, these bonds will be used to address capital needs related to new construction, enhance the safety and security of our children’s schools across the District, make renovations to address maintenance and adequacy for all schools, as well as provide for the District’s transportation and technology needs.
The $992.6 million November 6, 2018 bond referendum supports building and improving safe classrooms and learning spaces and includes:
- $403.4 million for new construction, rebuilds and additions, including the construction of three elementary campuses, design of one middle school, construction of one high school, the rebuild of Lakeview Elementary and Meadows Elementary, and additions at Madden Elementary and Neill Elementary
- $396.5 million to address life-cycle deficiencies and facility adequacy across the District
- $14.9 million to fund safety and security upgrades and investments
- $10.6 million for transportation
- $142.6 million for technology
- $19.7 million for future land purchases
- $5 million program contingency
As the advocate for business excellence in Fort Bend County, the chamber recognizes the critical and essential roles strong public schools have in the economic development and vitality of the region. Investing in high quality education provides our students with the necessary tools to become productive citizens. Additionally, an investment in FBISD will address the capital improvements needed to build and improve the safe classrooms and learning spaces that will impact students’ lives for many years to come.
The development of this bond follows an extensive Facilities Master Planning process that began in January 2018. This comprehensive due diligence will ensure that FBISD provides the best possible learning environment and worthwhile opportunities to of its 75,000 students. Further, each will receive a strong academic foundation, and develop the strong character and skills for lifelong success. The bond initiative represents the first of a two-phase, six-year plan to address capital needs of the District, which is expected to serve 85,000 students by the year 2027.
FBISD continues to have one of the lowest tax rates among peer districts and a low debt per student ratio. A successful bond election will not cause any immediate change in the existing tax burden; however, a potential three penny increase (not anticipated until 2020) may be needed during the duration of the three-year program. Most projections show that the tax rate will not be any higher than the 2016 rate and no more than one cent higher. One cent on the tax rate represents about $40 per year for the average home owner in the FBISD jurisdiction. Even so, FBISD would still maintain the lowest projected tax rates and debt per student ratio compared to other districts.
Please join the Fort Bend Chamber in supporting the 2018 FBISD Bond Proposal to keep our schools and community strong by building and improving safe classrooms and learning spaces for our children! If you would like to be an active participant in Strong Schools, Strong Community Committee, please contact the committee by email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.