Harris County Bond Propositions Call For Investments in Parks, Transportation and Public Safety Facilities

Harris County voters will be voting on whether to invest more money in area parks.
Harris County voters will be voting on whether to invest more money in area parks. Photo by Reggie Mathalone

Along with the candidates featured on the ballot, Harris County voters will be voting on three major bond propositions which target funding for public safety and infrastructure plans. The bond in total amounts to $1.2 billion, and if passed, is set to allocate $220 million to each of the county’s four precincts.

This bond is broken down into three propositions, Proposition A, B, and C. Proposition A, will provide $100 million to public safety facilities, while Proposition B will give $900 million to tackle transportation infrastructure and safety measures. Proposition C will allow $200 million to focus on construction and maintenance of public parks.

According to Carl Apple, the director of communications at the Harris County Engineering Department, it is important for voters to recognize that these funds are for capital expenditures, not day-to-day operations. If the bond is passed, Harris County Commissioners Court will identify the specific projects that they will provide funding for.

Since those on Commissioners Court decide how to distribute the bond’s funds, the Commissioners Court race will be one to watch. Different commissioners could choose different projects to allocate certain parts of the funds to.

If voters approve this bond, there will be a property tax increase of $32 a year for average homeowners. To educate and make voters aware of what they are voting for, the Harris County Department of Engineering has hosted a total of 24 community-engagement meetings.

“It was important not only to engage in outreach to tell the public about the individual propositions, so that they can make an informed vote themselves, but to also collect feedback and listen to the public,” Apple said.

Out of the total number of meetings, 16 were held completely in person, while the rest were held virtually. The department collected comment cards in their in-person meetings and set up stations with laptops and iPads where attendees could leave comments digitally. Comments could also be left on the department’s website either on their general page or on a map model that users could drag their comments to a specific area of the county.

“The goal is that all of these comments will be provided to county commissioners, so that they can use them to make informed decisions about what projects they want to prioritize,” Apple said.

Voters will have the opportunity to vote on these bonds that are featured on the ballot at polling locations or via mail-in ballots. The final day for voters to decide is Election Day, this Tuesday, November 8.

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Faith Bugenhagen is on staff as a news reporter for The Houston Press, assigned to cover the Greater-Houston area.