San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas
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June 29th, 2010
ACC contracts to buy Kyle land for future campus

by BRAD ROLLINS

The Austin Community College District has put 96 acres on Kyle Parkway under contract to buy as the future location of its North Hays County campus pending the November annexation election.

The land is located in the commercial portion of the Plum Creek development near the intersection of FM 1626 (Kyle Parkway) and Kohlers Crossing. The parcel is bound on one side with Union Pacific railroad tracks where regional leaders hope commuter rail will run someday between Austin and San Antonio.

ACC is buying the land for $9.84 million from Mountain Plum LTD, the college district announced today.

“Acquiring this land now is a good investment. We are and will continue to be the fastest growing institution of higher education in Central Texas. ACC must proactively plan for the future in order to continue meeting the vast and growing educational needs of the region we serve,” said Dr. Stephen B. Kinslow, the college’s president and chief executive officer.

The Kyle purchase is part of recent land acquisitions totaling $35.4 million to buy property in Bastrop, Elgin, Leander, north central Austin, and San Marcos.

ACC’s Master Plan calls for campuses to be constructed in Bastrop, Elgin, San Marcos, and the north Hays County area, subject to successful annexation votes in those communities. Bastrop ISD, Elgin ISD, McDade ISD, Hays CISD, and San Marcos CISD are all currently considering joining the ACC taxing district. Only registered voters within each area will be eligible to vote in their community’s election this November.

ACC also has an existing agreement for land in San Marcos contingent upon a successful annexation effort. The property consists of about 72 acres near Texas 123 and includes a partial donation of 51 acres by developer Randall Morris’ company. The selling price is expected to be approximately $2.3 million based on fair market value, the college district said today.

Voters in Hays CISD and San Marcos CISD will go the polls Nov. 2 to decide whether to authorize ACC to annex the areas into its tax district.

If the measure passes in either or both jurisdictions, property owners will pay the district’s property tax rate, currently set at 9.46 cents per $100 in property value. The college offers a standard $5,000 homestead exemption, and senior citizens and homeowners with disabilities receive an additional $105,000 exemption, for a total exemption of $110,000. For example, the owner of a $120,000 house would pay about $108 a year, or less than $9 a month, including the standard $5,000 homestead exemption.

Residents in annexed areas pay $39 per semester credit hour in-distrit tuition and fees rate instead of the out-of-district rate of $137 per semester credit hour.

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