Sherman ISD bond committee displays new proposal to community

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SHERMAN, Texas (KXII) -- Since Sherman ISD's $308 million bond failed in May, a committee has been working to put together a new proposal, and Wednesday, they revealed their ideas to the public.

The committee of community members has cut the price nearly in half, this time focusing on a new high school and technology improvements and taking out the new football stadium and additional elementary schools.

One member said he was against the bond before, but these changes have changed his mind

"I felt the amount was too big, the list of projects was too broad," voter John Markl said.

Sherman ISD brought together voters like John Markl, against the first bond proposal in May, and added them to its citizens advisory committee.

"Bringing people to the table saying what is it we need to change, what do we need to do different," SISD Director of Communications Emily Parks said.

Wednesday, voters had the chance to respond to different ideas for property tax hikes.

The first is a $220 per year increase for every $100,000 your home is worth. About the same hike as the first bond but they would borrow far less: $182 million versus $308, and pay it off quicker, 20 years.

Most of that would go to a new high school able to hold a thousand more students and then about $24 million would go to tech upgrades and making the current high school a middle school.

A second option would add another $10 to that same tax bill on a $100,000 home, allowing the district to borrow an extra $5.6 million to renovate Piner Middle School.

"In a nutshell basically we're saying build a new high school and re-allocate the students amongst the other facilities that we still have," Markl said.

In the last 10 years, Sherman ISD has seen a 15 percent increase in student enrollment.

The current high school is already 400 students over capacity.

"A learning environment is very important for a student, and when you have overcrowded facilities like we do here in Sherman, it really taxes our resources," Parks said.

"Bond debt is a fact of life for any school district and any community, but we've paired it down to the core needs and we're moving forward from there," Markl said.

If you still want to weigh in, there's a link to the district's bond survey in the related links.

The school board will decide this month whether to put it on the November ballot.

This all comes at the same time the city of Sherman is proposing a storm water fee increase, a 3 percent utility rate hike and 3.3 percent property tax increase.