Harlingen school district continues to make improvements to athletic department
About three years ago, voters approved Harlingen Consolidated Independent School District's tax ratification election.
The decision allowed the school district to generate additional dollars to their budget by changing the tax rate.
The school district uses the TRE for technology upgrades, department equipment, maintaining district buildings and the athletic department.
"It's helped us in so many ways,” said HCISD Athletic Director Randy Cretors. “The biggest thing is to maintain your facilities in athletics. When you talk about football fields, track, softball fields; if you can the right way you get additional years of use out of them."
The district recently added handrails and a new scoreboard to J. Lewis Boggus Stadium.
While the scoreboard itself wasn't purchased with the TRE, the base design was. Before the TRE, HCISD would have to do a bond issue every 10 to 12 years for the big projects, in addition to the local budget.
Officials say they had to prioritize on what needed to be fixed.
"We were only able to get half a million to $750,000 per year, which is not going to pay for too many things,” said Assistant Superintendent for District Operation Oscar Tapia.
Now, the TRE generates an annual total of $10 million to pay for upgrades without accruing debt, which has allowed the district to create a ten-year master plan of improvements.
The athletic department is in year three of its five-year plan of upgrades, which includes rebuilding tracks and adding turf to the mini-stadiums at Harlingen High School and Harlingen High School South.