CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — On Aug 23, Corpus Christi Independent School District trustees approved placing a $220 million bond on the Nov 8 ballot, a measure that the district says would not affect residents' tax rates.
The bond package includes a new campus for the 68-year-old Hamlin Middle School. The new campus would be built on Hamlin property while students continued classes in the existing school.
“They’re very old. I think the average age of the schools in the bond last year was in the low seventies,” said Roland Hernandez, CCISD superintendent.
A new middle school would also be built on the city's South Side on property the district owns near the under-construction Creekside Elementary School.
Renovations and additions to T.G. Allen Elementary School would also be made as George Evans Elementary School would combine with it.
Other funds would go to additional gymnasiums at Adkins Middle School as well as Driscoll Middle School.
Aging playgrounds and marquees around the district would also be upgraded.
Hernandez said the district wanted to be mindful that it wasn't increasing taxes, but Nueces County Tax Assessor/Collector Kevin Kieschnick said this is deceptive.
"That is a tax increase," Kieschnick said. "And that's the reason why this has to go to the voters because they are increasing the amount of money spent to cover that new additional debt. Everybody's opening up their tax bill and seeing they're paying more."
Kieschnick said this is because of property valuations in Nueces County, which are up significantly in the area and throughout the state. Statewide valuations have increased as much as 26 percent.
“My personal bill went up by $500 and that’s indicative of the increases that are being spent right now,” he said.
Kieschnick said as property values go up, despite the tax rate not going up, residents end up paying more.
Below is breakdown of the bond.
- $220 Million Package
- Two new middle schools
- Renovations to elementary schools
- Two new middle school gymnasiums
- Playground and marquee upgrades
NO increase in CCISD'd tax rate
New Hamlin Middle School
- Modern design
- 750 student capacity
- Completion 2025
New South Side Middle School
- Modern design
- 900 student capacity
Consolidate Allen and Evans Elementary
- Update and expand Allen, close Evans
New Gym for Driscoll Middle School
New Gym for Adkins Middle School
Elementary School Playgrounds
- Upgrade 25 elementary playgrounds
- New, safe equipment
- Upgrade 35 school marquees
Reimburse general fund for land purchases