Please make sure to vote yes for the City of San Antonio 2012-2017 Bond Program on May 12th.
Thanks to the leadership of City Councilwoman Elisa Chan, the Bond Program includes $4.375 million for the construction of the Urban Ecology Center at Phil Hardberger Park.
The Urban Ecology Center, currently being designed by Lake/Flato Architects, will serve as the primary hub and focal point of the park. Its mission will be to educate citizens of all ages about the relationship of nature and the urban environment. Educational offerings will include programs for schools and youth groups, adult lectures, workshops and discussions as well as weekend family programs. Key themes of the programs will focus on botany, wildlife, general ecology, connecting people with nature through hands-on discovery of and fostering ecologically responsible citizens. The Center will also serve as the headquarters of the Bexar County Master Naturalists.
On May 12, San Antonio voters will have the opportunity to vote on $596 million in capital improvements — better streets, safer sidewalks, reduced flooding and new and improved parks, libraries, fire stations and museums — all over the city. This is an opportunity to invest in San Antonio’s future. Here are five reasons to vote yes for the Bond Program:
- Most of the bond money — $465 million, or 78 percent of the total package — will be spent on urgent infrastructure needs: streets, sidewalks, bridges and improved drainage to reduce flooding. The remainder will fund new and improved fire stations, libraries, parks and other community and public safety facilities. No bond monies will be used for downtown street car projects.
- The Bond Program will allow the City to make these improvements without raising taxes. The City of San Antonio currently has the best credit rating of any major city in America — a ‘AAA’ General Obligation bond rating by all three major credit rating agencies — which means the City can borrow at low interest rates. As a result, the City can afford these investments and continue to balance the budget without raising the tax rate.
- The 140 projects in the Bond Program were selected by the community. A diverse group of 128 citizens served on four committees to review and select proposed bond projects. The committees held a total of 20 meetings, which were attended by over 800 residents. The citizen committees submitted their recommended projects to the City Council, which approved more than 97 percent of the recommendations.
- A Citizens’ Oversight Committee will oversee the Bond Program to ensure funds are spent properly. The 2007-2012 Bond Program was completed on time and $47 million under budget using similar accountability measures, such as the Citizen’s Oversight Committee, a web site to track spending and annual financial audits.
- This investment in our city will create thousands of local jobs. The Bond Program will lay the groundwork for a brighter future for one of America’s greatest cities. It will improve the quality of life for people who live here and make San Antonio a more attractive place for businesses to invest and relocate.
For more information about the Bond Program, please visit www.sanantonio.gov/2012Bond/.