Breaking Down the Bonds: Proposition 4

Breaking Down the Bonds: Proposition 4

AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) - Proposition 4 deals with the upkeep of existent and creation of new neighborhood parks.

Here's what it'll look like on the ballot:


"SHALL the City Council of the City of Amarillo, Texas, be authorized to issue general obligation bonds of the City in the principal amount of $22,250,000 for permanent public improvements and public purposes, to wit: acquiring, constructing, improving, expanding, renovating and equipping neighborhood park and recreation facilities of the City and the acquisition of land therefor; such bonds to mature serially or otherwise over a period not to exceed twenty-five (25) years from their date, to be issued and sold in one or more series at any price or prices and to bear interest at any rate or rates (fixed, floating, variable or otherwise) as shall be determined within the discretion of the City Council at the time of issuance or sale of the bonds; and whether ad valorem taxes shall be levied upon all taxable property in the City sufficient to pay the annual interest and provide a sinking fund to pay the bonds at maturity?"

This proposes a $22,250,000 bond for 25 parks projects, all listed below:

For more details on all of these projects, check out pages 56-75 of this document.

Almost all 25 parks projects are for repairing and upgrading parks in all parts of Amarillo.

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"Restrooms, playgrounds, splash pads, repairs for concrete, hike and bike walking trails, electrical repairs - those are all items that can continually, as we go, age and need updating and repairs," said Rod Tweet, Director of Parks and Recreation.

There's funding for some parks - like Hines Memorial and Hilltop parks - to be completely redesigned.

Four new splash pads would be installed throughout the city, and erosion at some lakes - like at Medi Park and Southeast Lake - would be taken care of.

A park would be built in The Colonies neighborhood, and some playgrounds would be rebuilt to make them ADA compliant.

"This proposition really gives us the capital we need to maintain 64 parks, almost 1600 acres of property," said Tweet. "We've got parks ranging from the 1920s up until just currently, so this is capital money to keep those parks in a good safe quality manner."

Some money is allocated to projects that have already started.

Those include the reconstruction of Gene Howe Park and Martin Road Lake, and the conversion of the old North YMCA into the Charles E. Warford Activity Center.

The biggest ticket item would restore the old Liberty Theatre, and turn the surrounding area into a park.

That would cost about $5 million.

If this bond does not pass, the parks department would have to look for other sources of funding.

"That will certainly be a challenge for our city councilmen to come up with that solution," said Tweet.

If this proposition is passed, Amarillo residents would see a property tax increase of anywhere from 2¢ to 4¢ per year for the next 5 years.

The total increase amount depends on how many of the 7 propositions are approved.

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