Dueling campaigns waged on Williamson Co. road, park bond propositions

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WILLIAMSON COUNTY, Texas (KXAN) — Dueling campaigns are happening during the early voting period related to the $447 million-dollar bond propositions facing voters in Williamson County.

On Tuesday morning, leaders from seven Chambers of Commerce gathered outside the historic Williamson County Courthouse in Georgetown to announce their collective endorsement of the bonds. The two proposals include $412 million for road projects and $35 million for park improvements.

Leaders from seven Chambers of Commerce gathered outside the Williamson County Courthouse to announce their collective endorsement of the bonds (KXAN/Will DuPree)

“Proposition A and B will provide a total package of $447 million to fund infrastructure, amenities and parks,” said Jason Ball, the president and CEO of the Round Rock Chamber. “While this is a significant investment, it is not expected to raise the county tax rate.”

The show of support Tuesday came from the chambers in Cedar Park, Georgetown, Leander, Liberty Hill, Pflugerville, Round Rock and Taylor.

Signs encouraging people to support the bond proposals can be seen outside almost every early voting location. However, a group of residents opposing the measures are passing out their own signs to campaign against the propositions.

Dana Boehm, a veterinarian in Hutto, has three signs displayed in her yard reading “vote no on bonds.”

(KXAN/Will DuPree)

She opposes them in part because the road bond could potentially fund the Southeast Loop, which would create a bypass off U.S. 79 between Hutto and Taylor. The proposed route for that project could cut through her family’s farmland.

“About 75% of voters vote yes on bonds,” Boehm said. “I don’t think people realize that bonds are debt, and that just increases taxes down the way, so at some point those are going to become due.”

Supporters, though, argue investing in the list of projects included in the bonds is worthwhile to deal with the county’s rapid growth.

“The Greater Taylor Chamber’s support for this proposal is not without its critics,” President and CEO Tia Rae Stone said Tuesday. “But what we would say to them is that this proposal does not increase your county taxes, but it does help us move forward — mitigating chaos, protecting our citizens and extolling the best way we can the east Williamson County rural way of life that we represent.”

For a list of early voting locations in Williamson County, follow this link.

The votes on the bond proposals will be tallied on Nov. 5.

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