AUSTIN (KXAN) - The Austin school board approved an $892 million bond package Monday night aimed at relieving crowding at campuses across the district, upgrading equipment and technology and improving safety.
The package, which would raise taxes by 3.5 cents per $100 of assessed property value will be put before the voters in May. For a home valued at $200,000, the tax bill would rise about $70 a year, not including any exemptions.
"You want to continue to make wise investments in your renovations," said board President Vincent Torres. "Just as replacing your car or your house at some point you say it's not worth it to add anymore and tear it down. That's a conversation we are going to continue to have."
The largest chunk of money -- about $350 million--would go toward building repairs and improvements. About $166 million would be set aside for academic programs, fine arts and athletics, and about $234 million would go toward building three new schools and expanding others to relieve overcrowding.
Trustees also approved forming a plan for the future of Eastside Memorial High School, which is under fire from the Texas education Agency because of low performance.
More than 100 trees covered in lights now shine bright throughout Zilker Park. The Trail of Lights is open for another season.
A 10-year-old was killed while standing outside of a vehicle which lost control during the icy conditions, DPS said.
Travis County non-profit Center for Child Protection will benefit next March from an all day fundraiser at the Circuit of the Americas that will see plenty of donors racing on the track.
Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg heads to court this week as a defendant in a civil trial that could oust her from office.
Santa visited Austin early on Sunday, joining hundreds of motorcyclists for their annual Toy Run.
Late Saturday night into early Sunday morning, a light band of freezing drizzle traversed the I-35 corridor eastward. With sub-freezing temperatures, even the light precipitation created major problems.