A look at some of the big issues for Saturday’s Special Election in the Brazos Valley

Published: May. 6, 2022 at 6:01 PM CDT
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BRYAN, Texas (KBTX) - Saturday, May 7 is decision day for the 2022 May Special Election.

From State Propositions, to local sales tax in Brazos County and area school bond packages, voters have important items to decide on.

Almost 2,000 people have voted early in the Brazos County Special Election. That’s just over 1% of the county’s 122,000 registered voters.

Election’s officials are preparing for the turnout Saturday. This time there are just eight locations due to expected low voter turnout.

“You know the less the turnout, the more your vote carries. You know when we have a big turnout say 80,000 or 90,000 people sometimes you feel like you get kind of lost in the shuffle,” said Trudy Hancock, Brazos County Elections Administrator.

Brazos County residents in Emergency Service Districts 3 and 4 will decide on a potential sales tax increase that would help fund volunteer fire departments

“It allows us to further our operations to help provide a better service to the community. What this also avoids is us having to raise the property taxes,” said Chief Jason Ware, Brazos County Precinct 3 Volunteer Fire Department.

In Iola, voters Saturday will decide on a $24 million bond that would include a new gymnasium, fix drainage issues and more. It would mean an additional $102 annually in taxes for a $100,000 property.

“We’re adding some classrooms. We want to expand our band hall. Our programs building and so we want to expand that. In the elementary we are going to have a designated, a music room just for the music program,” said Jeff Dyer, Iola ISD Superintendent.

If approved the new gymnasium which would be the biggest expense Dyer said the new gym would have multiple purposes.

”We’re looking at a competition gym, where it’s going to be a multipurpose facility and the use will be of course basketball and volleyball competition games. But we’re looking at doing graduation in there also do plays, for One Act Play, elementary plays and music concerts. So it’s going to be a very multipurpose facility for us,” Dyer said.

In Brenham, voters will decide on a nearly $154 million bond that includes some things like building a new junior high school, and improvements to the high school.

Across the state, voters will also get the chance to weigh in on two amendments focused on property taxes.

Polls will be open Saturday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Voter information for Brazos County is here.

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