Trustees of Amarillo Independent School District voted last week to spend $13,000 on a communications plan to explain the district's $99.5 million bond referendum going to voters May 11.

The information effort will emphases that every campus will be upgraded or expanded in the capital program, said Superintendent Rod Schroder.

Trustee Linda Pitner said the material would not advocate for passage of the general obligation bond referendum but will provide information on the proposed capital program and its costs to taxpayers.

"There needs to be a way to get the factual information out," she said.

Projects to be financed with bond proceeds includes a new elementary school, two new sixth-grade campuses, security upgrades at 13 elementary schools, and synthetic turf at all middle school football fields.

Enrollment has grown by 13.5% since the district's last bond election in 1993, officials said.

Passage of the requested bonds will result in a tax increase of 1.75 cents per $100 valuation.

Property within the district is valued at $7.9 billion.

Amarillo Independent School District's $97 million of outstanding GO debt is rated AA-plus by Standard & Poor's and Aa2 by Moody's Investors Service. The debt is enhanced to Triple-A with coverage by the state's Permanent School Fund.

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