New schools, new names

January 31, 2019

The November 2018 bond newsletter from EPISD can be read here.

Up until now I was unaware of the fact that as the district consolidates  schools they are renaming them.

Bradley and Fannin are being consolidated with the new name Dr. Joseph Torres elementary.

Dowell, Schuster, and Crosby will become Arcadio Duran, Jr. elementary.

Henderson and Clardy become Dr. Josefina Villamil Tinajero

Lincoln, Bond, and Roberts will become Donald Lee Haskins

Morehead and Johnson are to be named Charles Q. Murphree

Ross and Hughey become Wally Hartley

Terrace Hills and Collins become Tyrone “Bobby Joe” Hill

The newsletter has a short biography of each of the people the schools are to be named after.

We deserve better


EPISD sells bonds and doesn’t need voter approval

January 23, 2019

A loyal reader sent this to our attention:

EPISD previously created a public facility corporation under Texas law.

They did this to pay for the new central office facilities.

The way it works is that the public facility corporation can authorize and sell bonds without voter approval.  They simply place notices in the local newspaper (how many people subscribe to the newspaper, and of those who do how many ever even look at the classifieds?).  If a voter petition that objects to the issuance does not get filed within 60 days they can issue the bonds.  The petition must bear the signature of 5 percent of the registered voters in the district.

After all you didn’t complain did you?

From there the public facility corporation builds the building and leases it to the school district.

Nifty huh?

We deserve better


Property tax cap

January 18, 2019
This came in the other day:
     [P]  Here is another website you might consider adding to your list — since in this ongoing Texas Legislative Session — legislators will be looking at reducing the property roll back cap trigger down from it’s current trigger level of 8-percent  to a 2-percent trigger cap.  See —
     [P]  Our local legislative delegation members will fight against lowering the cap — and Sunday night on the KVIA TV News Extra program — Senator Rodriguez indicated he is against it.  As he goes, the other members of the delegation will follow.  In addition, the city, county, UMC and school districthired lobbyists — will also raise objections and fight against any lowering of the cap.  The reality is — individual voters’ and property taxpayers — do not have hired lobbyists and others fighting for their interests.  Bottom line — that’s where your blog can create an impact!
     [P]  The 2-percent level is most likely too low — so that cap trigger level may possibly be only a negotiating point — so legislators can compromise at a 4 or 5-percent trigger cap.
     [P]  Since many of your faithful blog followers’ and creatively blunt posters — are pissed about always rising local property taxes, plus associated stupid spending — here’s a chance for them to get their ‘oars in the water — and let those state legislators outside El Paso who are pushing this issue — know there are El Paso voters’ and property taxpayers — who approve, plus appreciate and support their efforts.
————————————  Old Fart.
POST SCRIPT:  Since you keep your blog updated each day — with a fresh topic for public thought and discussion — it is certainly better than the stale blogs of David K, Max Powers, Zorro and some of the others.  Therefore, it certainly seems you have a daily opportunity — to make your blog an action site — by posting interactive web links as you have just started to do.
He is of course right.
We need to speak up and let the legislators know how we feel.
We deserve better

You asked for the job

January 9, 2019

Mr. Max Higgs sent this in as a response to our post New year’s resolutions.

We asked what resolutions we would like our local government officials to make and keep.

1. Remember you asked for the job.
2. Remember all your employers.
3. Do your job.

We deserve better


Attracting industry

January 8, 2019

Following up on the note about commercial property tax rates, let’s imagine that an industrial company wanted to move to El Paso and manufacture something.  Maybe they would like to make a component that one of the many plants in Mexico needs.

Or maybe the economic development people would like to attract a big manufacturer to town.

This might get in the way:

El Paso has the highest property tax rate for industrial concerns of the largest 50 cities in the United States.

Looking at the average rates we are close to twice as high.

We deserve better



Taxing us out of business

January 6, 2019

Let’s say that our job is to recruit new businesses to El Paso.

How should we try to get around this?

According to the 50-State Property Tax Comparison Study from the Lincoln Institute El Paso had the 4th highest commercial property tax rates of the largest 50 cities in the United States.

If you look at our rates and the average rates we are generally 1/3 higher than the other cities.

We deserve better


Best local government official

January 3, 2019

The floor is open for nominations for best local government official.

Please tell us why you have nominated this person.

We deserve better


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