By BRAD ROLLINS
In a rare unanimous decision, Hays County commissioners voted this morning to “conceptually” accept a reworked roads package from the state transportation department that scraps plans for Ranch Road 12 expansion but includes improvements to Interstate 35 and U.S. 290.
Like a deal effectively scuttled in May when the county’s voters declined to issue bonds to pay for it, the state would reimburse the county up to $133 million over 20 years for construction of the first three-mile segment of Farm-to-Market Road 110, the San Marcos loop and widening Farm-to-Market Road 1626. The $52.7 million originally designated for widening Ranch Road 12 will instead go toward adding center and turn lanes to a stretch of U.S. 290 near Dripping Springs and new interstate overpasses and frontage roads in Kyle and Buda.
The court voted 5-0 to preliminarily accept the deal but still must decide whether to venture out for another countywide bond vote in May or pay for all or part of the package through sale of revenue anticipation bonds, possibly through the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority.
“I don’t see the package changing at all at this point. Now it’s just refining the numbers,” County Judge Elizabeth Sumter said.
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