BCISD bond fails; needs don’t go away, superintendent says

Burnet Consolidated Independent School District voters turned down a $33.1 million bond proposal in the November 5 election.

It failed 1,443 votes to 1,291.

BCISD Superintendent Keith McBurnett released a statement regarding the election, thanking those who developed the bond proposal and acknowledging the challenge of it passing due to “the large number of voters that do not have a direct connection to BCISD.”

Under the proposed bond, the district wanted to increase the capacity of Bertram Elementary School to 700 students as well as connect all buildings on that campus with hallways. The district also wanted new tile and carpet flooring and paint in several campuses and classrooms.

Other plans included a one-to-one computer initiative with students each getting district-issued technology; purchasing buses; renovating the Burnet High School auditorium; repairing and replacing some roofs; and replacing some HVAC units.

McBurnett said those needs don’t go away with the bond’s defeat.

“Tonight, the reality is that the needs identified through the facility assessment still exist, while the ability to pay for those needed renovations through the operating budget does not,” he stated in the media release.

He pointed out that 85 percent of BCISD’s operating budget goes to salaries, utilities, and transportation alone — which does not include campus and department budgets — leaving the district with little left over to take care of major renovations and maintenance concerns.

“As some of the supporters of the bond have noted, the community will either pay for the needed renovations and classroom expansions now or later,” McBurnett stated. “With the impact of inflation, the cost later will be greater than the cost today.”

He pledged that he and district leadership will review the election results, listen to BCISD voters and residents, and bring “forward a revised bond proposition in the future.”

editor@thepicayune.com

5 Responses to “BCISD bond fails; needs don’t go away, superintendent says”

  1. Brett says:

    Why finance things like maintenance and how is this not included in the operating budget? Why not fix one roof every few years instead of paying subcontractors tens of thousands of dollars every year to spray seal; which lasts about 2 years. Why finance computers that will be out of date in 5 years? The majority of new subdivisions in Burnet County are being populated by retirees with no children in the school district, which means more money collected in school taxes with very few children added to the rolls. Meaning next year and the years after the school district will continue to collect more money simply because property values keep going up. Even the school district’s projection of the number of students added to the rolls doesn’t add up to 33 million. As far as voters having a connection to the school district, if I pay property taxes, then I have a direct connection to how the school district borrows and spends money. What most voters don’t realize is that when a school district asks to issue a school bond, it doesn’t pay teachers more, hire more teachers, or make classroom sizes smaller; it is just the school district asking to borrow money from the tax payers to pay for special projects that do nothing but increase the value of property owned by the school district. If they had asked for 33 million and said we are hiring 20 new teachers and giving all of them a raise, I might have voted for it. I’m not for borrowing money because the school board can’t plan ahead.

  2. rhiene says:

    Great quote by Mr. McBurnett ” the reason it did not pass because so many people do not have connection with BCISD. I thought ever citizen paid taxes and had a connection with BCISD. I think what he meant was his puppet’s didn’t have enough stroke. I WANT TO THANK ALL THE CONSERVATIVE VOTER’S WHO SAW THROUGH THIS HOAX. YOUR TAXES WOULD HAVE BEEN RAISED NEXT YEAR TO PAY FOR THIS BOND IF PASSED. GUARANTEE 1111. WE NEED TO VOTE OUT ALL OF McBURNETT’S PUPPET’S ON THE SCHOOL BOARD..IF NOT THEY ARE GOING TO KEEP TRYING TO STUFF BONDS AND HIGHER TAX’S DOWN OUR THROAT’S.. AGAIN THANKS AND YOU ALL SAVE THE YOUNGER PEOPLE FROM MORE HIGH TAXES. KEEP VOTING CONSERVATIVE AND USE GOOD OLE COMMON SENSE.. IF SMELLS FISHY IT IS FISHY..

  3. Wayne Shipley says:

    I always have to laugh at the howling by admin types that goes on when a school bond is defeated. There was once an episode of “The Office” where the Accountants were tasked with finding departments that were spending too much. They did, in fact, find a department that was over spending and over staffed – theirs. The report was, of course, that there was no place to cut the budget.

  4. T. Stephens says:

    BCISD Superintendent K. McBurnett shame on you! For your information my connection to the school district, and this bond election, amounts to $3300. Last year it amounted to $3200, and the year before that it was $3000…I could go on, but you get my point! How rude and arrogant to suggest that taxpayers without children have no right to speak out against our district taking on more debt.
    I would strongly suggest if 80% of the 35-40 million dollars the district receives each year is going toward saleries and transportation cost, from a business stand point a close review of the expenses sounds necessary. And yes we all agree our kids future is important, so not keeping up with ongoing maintenance needs is not an option. A starting point that might be considered is the six figure salary we’re paying you.

  5. A tax payer says:

    I’m still waiting on all these ‘events’ that the school was to host with the expanded track, new artificial turf and extra seating.
    Yep…… still waiting.

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