The Woodlands Township is ready to issue $17 million in bonds
Several years ago, most of The Woodlands was destined to become a part of Houston. The residents, after seeing Kingwood become annexed, began seeking a way to avoid the same fate. After several trips to Austin for meetings with legistlators, numerous surveys, studies and meetings, residents voted on a plan to become an incorporated city separate from Houston and Conroe.
Town Center, which is the downtown area of The Woodlands, became the taxing authority for The Woodlands Township. In order to earn that independance, the new township agreed to float a little more than $16 million in bonds to pay for projects in Houston. Another $320,000 will be paid to the city of Conroe to fund a fire service project in the area under their jurisdiction.
Under the negotiated agreement to avoid annexation, the township has until November to make its first payment to Houston and Conroe. In addition to the direct payments, the cities of Conroe and Houston will continue to collect a 1/16th of on cent sales tax in their extraterritorial jurisdictions indefinitely, even though they will be within the boundaries of The Woodlands. In Houston alone, those sales tax revenues are estimated to be another $45 million in the next 30 years.
The Woodlands Township, Houston and Conroe are confident that this plan is a fair settlement in which each party will benefit. If you ask the residents of The Woodlands if their independance is worth the $17 million in bond payments, I think you will hear a resounding "YES".