When It Comes To Expensive High School Stadium Projects, Some Texas Voters Want A Timeout

A new law requires school districts to identify individual projects when they ask voters for bond approval.

By Michael Marks & Shelly BrisbinNovember 11, 2020 11:31 am, , , ,

One of the ways Texans’ love of high school football is clear is that they’re willing to pay for it. Bond elections have supported expensive stadiums in recent years: a $70 million facility in Katy, for example; another that cost $60 million in Allen; and a $48 million stadium in Prosper. But if last Tuesday’s election is any indication, Texans may be a little more reluctant these days to shell out large amounts cash for these kinds of projects.

Jacob Carpenter is an education reporter for the Houston Chronicle. He told Texas Standard that this year, school districts were required to separate the projects for which they were seeking bond funding into individual ballot measures, rather than bundling several proposals together. 

“We saw that, interestingly, voters were more likely to approve a bond proposition that was much more about rebuilding schools, or new school construction, or buses or technology,” Carpenter said. “And they were a little bit less likely to support something like a football stadium.”

What you’ll hear in this segment:

– Where the new law requiring “line item” bond issues was an important factor in the recent election

– Whether fewer stadium approvals will become a trend

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