By Mary Alys Cherry
The state of League City is quite good, Mayor Pat Hallisey will be quick to tell you, but he hopes to make it better.
The best way, he thinks, is for voters to approve the three bond referendums on their Saturday, May 4 municipal election ballot. And, he offered a rather strong argument for passage. There are three propositions on the ballot – A, B and C, he explained as he addressed the large crowd at the League City Regional Chamber State of the City Luncheon March 8 in the Johnnie Aroflo Civic Center.
“A and B are general obligation bonds for drainage and mobility improvement projects — $73 million for drainage and flooding projects and $72 million for 10 traffic and mobility projects,’” he said, adding that Prop C is a sales tax referendum. The $150 million from the bonds is only the tip of the iceberg, he said, adding that something definitely needs to be done. “People who sit in traffic an hour every morning aren’t going to stay here very long,” the mayor pointed out, adding that Congressman Randy Weber also is trying to help the city with its problems.
“But why the decision to place the sales tax referendum on the ballot? Simply to offset any tax increase if the bond propositions pass,” he said, adding that the revenue from the tax will be dedicated to mobility and drainage projects only. And, it will cost only one penny for every $4 one spends.
Prop C, the mayor said, “will bring in an estimated $3.3 million in the first year alone and increase as we bring in more commercial business.
“Basically, for every $4 you spend at Starbucks for that cup of coffee, ONE penny will go to drainage and traffic improvements in League City. And that includes visitors to our city. In fact, 30 percent of our current sales tax revenue is generated by visitors to our city,” he told the crowd, explaining that the bond propositions are the city’s first in 27 years.
League City Love was the theme of the luncheon, so, when he concluded his remarks, he added: “Go out and show your love for League City.”
Hallisey also said he was proud of the work he and the City Council had done this past year and noted that he and a number of local officials were in Austin earlier that week.
“We are all working together to ensure the future success of League City. Now that doesn’t mean we don’t disagree at times, but it is different than it was just a few months ago. We are more collaborative, respectful, and we are a team. We are all working towards the same goal – to make League City the best place to live, work and play,” he told the crowd that included Galveston County Commissioner Ken Clark, City Manager John Baumgartner and City Councilmen Larry Millican, Chad Tressler and Greg Gripon.
City Manager Baumgarter also addressed the crowd, bringing smiles to many faces as he outlined a number of projects the city is currently focused on – a master water plan, Calder Road, additional park facilities, better communications to better engage residents, new businesses and providing a quality environment.
“This year – 2019 – will be our best yet,” he promised. And, from the sound of the applause, it most likely will be.