The land that the FCISD is looking to obtain is located at the corner of W. Nelson and FM 791, which is directly across the street from the current school campus location.
“We’re still doing all the exploration and we’re still trying to lock up the land,” said Superintendent Tylor Chaplin. “We are in the process of doing that now. We’re probably still a couple of weeks away from getting the land locked up with the title company and everything. Hopefully we can get it locked up where we can plan on calling a bond election in May, but we‘re not going to call the bond election if we don‘t have the land locked up.”
District officials emphasize that the possible bond election is in the planning phase and that the land acquisition is still in the title phase with contracts being reviewed with the title company.
Once the land title goes through the FCISD is obligated to hold a bond election to ask taxpayers within the district to raise their property tax rates enough to pay for a bond to fund the building of new school facilities to extend the campus.
“Anytime we raise taxes for building or construction, you have to ask taxpayers for permission to do that,” explained Chaplin.
A survey/questionnaire has recently been sent throughout the Falls City community in order to get input and feedback from the community regarding a possible bond election.
The first question in the survey asks:
1. If an election is held, would you support or oppose the issuance of up to 40 million dollars in school bonds, which would be financed by an estimated increase in property taxes of 23 dollars per month on one hundred thousand dollars of taxable property value?
A bond steering committee is set to do a presentation at the Feb. 19 board meeting, in which the committee will outline what they recommend the school board do as far as the facilities go, and how much they recommend calling the bond amount for.
“As long as we get the title to the land, as long as we get the land in Falls City‘s (school district) name, then the school board will move forward with either calling a bond election for May- if they choose to based on the recommendation of the bond steering committee- or not. Obviously, the final say is up to the board,” said Chaplin.