Thursday, January 19, 2017

Austin ISD facilities plan, 'new' Travis County Courthouse, proves value of defeating bonds....


"So then, each of us will give an account of himself to God."
Romans 14:12

About a month ago, we had some modestly positive comments to make about Austin ISD's new facilities plan; they recently announced the next step in the process:
We need your input as we continue to plan for our #AISDFuture with the Facility Master Plan (FMP). During these meetings, AISD will present the Facilities and Bond Planning Advisory Committee’s (FABPAC) FMP update, including updates on preliminary options, and receive feedback from the public. Each meeting will focus on a different vertical team, though anyone can attend any meeting.

Email us: future@austinisd.org
Call direct: 512-414-9595
Upcoming Meeting Locations:
* January 24 McCallum HS – Cafeteria, (6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.) | Vertical Teams: McCallum & Special Campuses
* January 25 Crockett HS – Cafeteria, (6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.) | Vertical Teams:Akins & Crockett
* January 26 Garcia YMLA – Cafeteria, (6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.) | Vertical Teams: LBJ & Reagan
* January 31 Martin MS - Cafeteria, (6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.) | Vertical Teams: Eastside Memorial & Travis
* February 1 Burnet MS - Cafeteria, (6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.) | Vertical Teams: Anderson & Lanier
* February 2 Gorzycki MS - Cafeteria, (6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.) | Vertical Teams: Austin & Bowie

More information online at www.AISDFuture.com

During Community Engagement Series #3, AISD will present the FABPAC's FMP update, including updates on preliminary options, and receive feedback from the public. The FABPAC will review and use public input as they continue to work with consultants to refine the FMP draft and eventually formulate recommendations to modernize our district over the next 20-25 years.
But while we're on the subject of fallout from the bonds we've helped defeat over the years, check out the latest on the Travis County Courthouse front:
The federal government has approved Travis County’s application to utilize the old U.S. courthouse for its probate court offices.

Travis County commissioners were handed the deed to 200 W. 8th Street on Thursday morning. The courthouse – built in 1936 – has been vacant since the new federal courthouse on West 5th opened in 2012. The U.S. General Services Administration declared the building surplus, and the county applied to take ownership of the property.

....

Officials have been looking for remedies to the overcrowding at the Heman Marion Sweatt Courthouse since voters in 2015 narrowly rejected a $287 million bond that would have paid for a new civil courthouse. The county said they will need to renovate and restore the building before they will occupy it in 2020.
These solutions might not be perfect, but they're both light years better than what the respective governmental entities were proposing in 2013 and 2015.

Indeed, as much as it kills us to admit this, Mayor Adler's "corridor" bond that passed last year was (for all its flaws) still substantially less terrible than the rail bond that was defeated in 2014.

Bottom Line: It's amazing how often Plan B costs less while doing a better job accomplishing the task the governmental entity in question says they want to accomplish.

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