How were proposed projects for the 2020 bond election selected?

In September 2019, the North Richland Hills City Council established a 2020 Capital Program Advisory Committee to review street and other infrastructure needs and make recommendations for necessary improvements. The committee included 35 residents from across North Richland Hills. The committee met from October to February to review and prioritize projects.  They considered more than 100 streets that are in poor condition, the estimated cost for reconstruction and how much the city can afford without a tax rate increase. Committee members felt that a majority of proposed bond funding should be dedicated to improving heavily traveled streets such as Glenview, Iron Horse and Bedford-Euless, and the remaining to residential streets that carry less traffic. To stretch the funding further and improve more residential streets, the committee recommended that residential streets which are currently asphalt be reconstructed with asphalt, rather than more expensive and time-consuming concrete construction.

To prioritize the improvements, the committee considered numerous factors such as existing pavement conditions, traffic volumes, maintenance records, input from citizen surveys, whether or not the roadway is a primary public safety response route and estimated costs. While there are additional streets in need of reconstruction, the committee limited its recommendation to what the city can afford without increasing the property tax rate. The committee’s recommendation was presented to the City Council on January 27 and the City Council called for a May bond election at its February 10 meeting. Because of the coronavirus pandemic, the May election was postponed to November.

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1. What is a general obligation bond?
2. Why is the bond election being held now?
3. Why not postpone the election to May 2021 or another future date? 
4. Why issue bonds, rather than paying for projects with cash?
5. How will the bond proposition impact the city’s property tax rate?
6. Why doesn’t the city spend less on the golf course, NRH2O, parks and trails and more on fixing streets? 
7. How much was the city’s last bond election?
8. When was the last bond election for street improvements?
9. How were proposed projects for the 2020 bond election selected?
10. Why didn’t the city maintain these streets better? 
11. If approved, who will perform the street improvement work?
12. Will the Mayor’s construction firm benefit from this bond election? 
13. If the bond proposition is approved, when will construction begin?
14. Which streets will be reconstructed first?
15. How objective was the ranking?
16. Some of the proposed projects include all of the street, while others don’t. How were project limits determined?
17. If the bond proposal passes, what type of pavement will be used?
18. Will sidewalks be added?
19. How long will each project take?
20. How will you make sure construction does not take months or years longer than expected?
21. How many miles of streets does NRH have? Does the proposed bond program impact their maintenance?
22. When will other streets be reconstructed?
23. Who served on the 2020 Capital Program Advisory Committee?