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City anticipates bond election for zoo expansion to take place this year

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Posted at 5:51 PM, Jan 15, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-15 20:50:03-05

Assistant City Manager Bradley Ford said he anticipated a bond election for the expansion of Cameron Park Zoo to take place in 2019.

The $12.5 million bond election could happen in May or November. 

If passed, the money would fund an education center, a veterinary hospital and a penguin exhibit.

At this time, the city is evaluating the cost of maintaining the exhibits and new buildings.

"Right now the city staff is working to understand that better to ensure that not only is the bond, are the numbers appropriate for the building construction but also what is the long-term impact to the city's budget," Ford said. 

According to Ford, 360,000 guests visited the zoo last year with half of them being children.

"The education center certainly will be a premier location for educational opportunities in McLennan County and the surrounding area. To learn more about zoological elements. To learn more about how we care for the animals. To learn more about conservation efforts around the world."

Officials are also looking into the impact of the bond proposal on taxpayers. 

For a May bond election, the McLennan County Commissioner's Court would have to order an election before Feb. 15. The last meeting before the deadline is Feb. 5. 

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