The city of Andrews is looking to redirect some of its sales tax revenue in its newest ballot item for May.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the city has grown nearly 20% from 2010 to 2017.
With the constant growth, the city says the future water demands are on the forefront.
Engineers have estimated that it will cost the city $6 to $12 million to develop additional well fields, according to City Manager Steve Eggleston.
The city currently has 20 water wells in operation, per Eggleston.
“You know, if we were to grow any more, we’re really going to really be putting a strain on our water supply,” said Eggleston.
With the lack of funding, the city could have gone two other routes:
- Significantly increase water rates within city limits
- Borrow money which will raise water rates to pay back debt
Instead, officials chose to hold a Special Election on May 4, where residents can vote on Proposition A.
If passed, the proposition would allow the city to move portions of its sales tax revenue from the Andrews Economic Development Corporation to this new water project fund.
“No new tax, no rates. It’s just redirecting current money,” said Eggleston.
Longtime resident Sarah Bohannon says she would much rather see the money go elsewhere.
“I think they have to bring in more stores for us so that we don’t have to travel to Odessa all the time,” said Bohannon.
Eggleston says the small percentage taken out of the AEDC will not affect the city’s mission to bring more businesses to the town.
While details on the project are still limited, Eggleston says the money would be raised over the span of 10 to 15 years.