CIBOLO — City officials are planning to tackle additional repairs to Cibolo Valley Drive, but one councilman warns not to neglect other projects.
Leaders are scheduled to vote on issuing certificates of obligation bonds worth $7.5 million at a Sept. 8 meeting, which will go toward roadway improvements.
Councilman Joel Hicks, however, argued the borough has developing and unfinished roadwork funded in a similar fashion.
At a recent City Council session, he said residents have questioned him about the completion of those undertakings.
“I want to get Cibolo Valley Drive fixed,” said Hicks, who cited Haeckerville Road as an uncompleted roadway. “I want us to do them in a timely manner. … When we got projects sitting out in limbo, and (we) take more debt and take out a larger amount than we agreed upon, I am not for it.”
At a July 14 session, several council members stressed the need for the bonds to make critical upgrades to Cibolo Valley Drive.
Officials want the street repaired and resurfaced from Old Wiederstein to Borgfeld roads.
The lanes currently are being widened from Old Wiederstein to Interstate 35 North as part of an interlocal partnership between Cibolo and Schertz.
The project started in May and is a yearlong endeavor.
The planned repairs are needed as rainfall has coarsened the street, said Cibolo spokeswoman Christine Pollok.
No major accidents have been reported there, but “we want to make sure our residents are getting a nice road to drive their cars on,” she said. “We want to make sure it gets repaired before it gets (irreparable).”
Cibolo officials voted 5-1 at the July gathering to pursue the bond, with Hicks dissenting.
Councilwoman Jennifer Schultes was absent.
City leaders were given various finance options to address the street enhancements, including issuance of $5 million in tax notes to be paid off in seven years and $5 million in certificates of obligation bonds to be reimbursed in 10 years.
Councilman Steve Quinn proposed the city pursue $8 million in certificates of obligation bonds to be refunded in a decade, while colleague Ted Gibbs suggested $6 million as a “conservative approach” due to the novel coronavirus pandemic and its potential local economic impact down the road.
Certificates of obligation bonds allow the city to issue debt for projects without voter approval.
Cibolo Finance Director Anna Miranda said Quinn’s proposal would place a “tighter squeeze” on the town’s finances as it pays out roughly $1 million in each of the last couple of years.
She suggested the bond would provide a “comfort level” for the city to address other road issues with its street-maintenance funds, which the city plans to back the $7.5 million with. Part of the burg’s sales-tax money goes into its street-maintenance coffers.
Cibolo directed $537,500 last year for street betterments after earning $3.22 million in sales tax, Pollok said, and estimates another $633,333 and $700,000 to road upgrades in 2020 and 2021, respectively.
“I don’t want us to cut ourselves short,” Quinn said. “If Cibolo Valley Drive (costs us) $5 million to $6 million, I want us to have that buffer there (of 10 years).”
Repairs to this portion of Cibolo Valley Drive are projected to begin early 2021, Pollok said. The project is currently in the engineering phase.