Engage Allen: 2023 Bond
On Nov. 7, 2023, Allen residents will vote on bond propositions totaling $156,500,000 in City projects by issuing municipal bonds with no projected increase to the City tax rate. Read the ordinance approved on Aug. 8, 2023.
Following a citizen-led committee process held this spring, the projects included in the 2023 Bond were divided into five proposition categories as follows:
Proposition A: $47M
Existing street repairs, neighborhood repairs and traffic improvements
Existing street repairs, neighborhood repairs and traffic improvements
This proposition would provide funding for improvement and maintenance of streets, thoroughfares, alleys, sidewalks, bridges and other public ways. The projects to be undertaken as part of this bond proposition may include, but are not limited to:
|Existing street repairs||$18,550,000|
|Traffic signal improvements||$730,000|
|Traffic safety/ADA improvements||$2,000,000|
The issuance of $47,000,000 City of Allen, Texas General Obligation Bonds for street improvements, including associated neighborhood streetscapes, screening walls, streetlights, pedestrian intersections and crossings and ADA improvements and the imposition of a tax sufficient to pay the principal of and interest on the bonds.
Street repair crew pours concrete on a road in Allen
Ford Park improvements
This proposition would provide funding for improvements to Ford Park, including installation and development of athletic fields and sports courts.
The issuance of $17,000,000 City of Allen, Texas General Obligation Bonds for improvements to Ford Park, including athletic fields and sports courts and the imposition of a tax sufficient to pay the principal of and interest on the bonds.
Aerial photo of field complex at Ford Park
Public art projects
This proposition would provide funding for the ongoing development of public art projects within the City of Allen's public art program.
The issuance of $1,500,000 City of Allen, Texas General Obligation Bonds for public art projects and the imposition of a tax sufficient to pay the principal of and interest on the bonds.
'Current Drift' - Located at Cottonwood Creek Trail
Purchased with 2016 bond funds
This proposition would provide funding for improvements to streets and mobility infrastructure in downtown Allen, including land acquisition for the purpose of recreational development. The projects to be undertaken as part of this bond proposition may include, but are not limited to:
|Downtown land acquisition||$5,000,000|
|Downtown bike and pedestrian path development||$3,000,000|
The issuance of $8,000,000 City of Allen, Texas General Obligation Bonds for downtown street and mobility infrastructure improvements and the imposition of a tax sufficient to pay the principal of and interest on the bonds.
Street view of businesses in downtown Allen
Police headquarters and emergency dispatch center
This proposition would provide funding for improvements to police facilities, including a new police headquarters facility and emergency dispatch office.
The issuance of $83,000,000 City of Allen, Texas General Obligation Bonds for police facilities, including a new police headquarters facility and emergency dispatch office and the imposition of a tax sufficient to pay the principal of and interest on the bonds.
Digital render of new Allen Police Department Headquarters
Frequently Asked Questions
- What is a bond election?
Municipal bonds allow cities to fund major projects such as roads, parks, facilities and other capital expenses. Bonds are issued and repaid over an extended period of time, similar to the way many buyers finance the purchase of a home. This strategy helps keep costs more equitable between current and future residents - after all, many of the people who will enjoy these amenities haven’t even moved here yet!
Before issuing bonds which could potentially impact the tax rate, Texas cities are required to put any bond proposition to a vote. If a proposition receives more than 50% of the vote, bonds may be issued for the purpose specified on the ballot.
- How are projects selected for bond funding?
In Allen, residents lead the charge to select and prioritize projects to be paid for by bonds, set proposed bond package amounts and determine what impact (if any) the use of bond funds might have on the tax rate. Discussions are guided by a knowledgeable citizen committee with a history of service to Allen, with presentations and supplemental information provided by City of Allen staff.
- Will this bond election raise the City tax rate?
Every bond proposition is assessed for its potential impact to the tax rate. During the public input process, the Finance Subcommittee uses conservative projection data and financial forecasting to calculate potential tax rate impact based on the total bond package being proposed. These are only estimates and do not necessarily result in a tax increase.
For example, the 2016 bond propositions were estimated to have a potential tax rate increase of $0.004 (less than half a cent). Instead, City of Allen's tax rate has decreased by $0.1088 (more than 10 cents) since 2016.
In fact, over the last 30 years, the City of Allen has consistently decreased the tax rate while utilizing voter-approved bond funding for capital projects.
- Why does the City use bond debt to fund projects?
The City of Allen uses bond debt only when it’s necessary to fund needed public infrastructure, facilities or capital investments that will service the city for 20 years or longer. Bond funding spreads the cost to as many residents and businesses as possible over an extended period of time such that future residents and businesses also help fund community assets that benefit them. We call it intergenerational equity.
- How long will it take to repay bond debt money?
The City of Allen will repay bond debt within 20 years of bonds being sold. In the past, the City has repaid bond debt sooner than the anticipated 20 years. The City also has refinanced the sale of a bond series to lower interest repayment or pay off the debt sooner.
- How much will the interest be for bond debt on proposed projects?
The City of Allen will pay interest when the bonds are sold. The market determines the interest rates at the time the City sells the bonds; however, the City of Allen pays low interest rates due to excellent bond ratings. City of Allen’s bond rating is Aa1 from Moody’s Investors Service. The rating reflects strong fiscal management and the steady growth of our tax base. This rating provides significant savings to Allen taxpayers by qualifying the City of Allen for low interest rates.
- Does the City have to use bond debt to build new improvements?
Yes. In order to pay for significant capital investments and improvements, all cities must utilize bond funding. The City of Allen implements a public-led bond funding program to determine projects that will be proposed for funding over a period of five to seven years. This package of bond propositions goes to the Allen voters for approval. Even with voter approval, the City of Allen determines the timing for projects in a fiscally conservative manner based on economic conditions, impact to operations and other budget considerations.
Bond Planning & Public Input
In spring 2023, Allen residents led the charge to select and prioritize projects to be paid for by bonds, set bond amounts and determine what impact (if any) the bond might have on the tax rate. Discussions were guided by a knowledgeable citizen committee with a history of service to Allen, with presentations and supplemental information provided by City of Allen staff.
Five groups, called sub-committees, were established by Allen City Council to focus on the following topics: Public Safety; Parks and Downtown; Streets, Infrastructure and Neighborhoods; Public Art; and Finance.
Those who attended a public meeting were encouraged to join a sub-committee - no application or selection process required. Online feedback opportunities were made available throughout the public input process (check out a recap of the feedback opportunities in the Engage Allen portal).
Key Dates & Timeline
|Thursday, April 6, 2023||Joint Meeting, 2023 Bond Steering Committee & Allen City Council|
TIME: 6 p.m.
LOCATION: Allen Senior Recreation Center
|Monday, May 22, 2023||2023 Bond Public Kickoff & Input Meeting|
TIME: 7 p.m.
LOCATION: Allen ISD STEAM Center (1680 Ridgeview Drive, Allen, TX 75013)
|Spring/Summer 2023||Sub-Committee Meetings and Online Input Opportunities|
Dates, times and locations vary. View meeting calendar for details.
*Exact date to be determined
|Joint Meeting, 2023 Bond Steering Committee & Allen City Council|
Time and location to be determined
|Tuesday, Aug. 8, 2023||Potential Call for Election|
7 p.m., Council Chambers at Allen City Hall
|Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2023||Potential Bond Election Date|