Special Election Could Fix "Dangerous" Bryant Road

BRYANT, AR - Boone Road in Bryant sees about 4,000 cars every day.

The two lane drive connects Reynolds on the east to Alcoa on the west and some drivers think it has problem areas like open ditches rather than shoulders.

According to the City of Bryant, accidents are not too uncommon.

"We've actually had rollover accidents multiple times on this road since the park has opened," explained Bryant Mayor Jill Dabbs.

Mayor Dabbs says Boone Rd. is very underdeveloped for the amount of traffic it sees. No shoulders, open ditches and drainage being the main problems. 

A special election on May 20 could change that if everyone is on board.

Voters would have to approve three options on the ballot.

In order for funding to go to fixing Boone Rd. and fixing up parks, voters will need to vote "yes" for all four questions on the ballot. If they're against the repairs, they vote "no."

The first question on the ballot is about recalling the bond that built Bishop Park. Essentially it would be a refinancing of that bond since the city is paying it off at a rate of 10-11 years faster than expected, so there's extra money.

The second question is a financing tool that gives the city a better interest rate on repaying the bond by using the 1/8 cent park operation and maintenance tax as collateral.

The third is approving the use of the money on the overhaul of Boone Road.

The fourth is approving the use of the money for infrastructure improvements on the parks.

If approved, the city expects to start engineering planning immediately, start construction in 2015 and have the road finished in 18-24 months.

It would cost the city $10 million while actually not costing taxpayers anything since the bond is just a "refinancing" of the bond they approved that built Bishop Park a few years ago.

"Whether this passes or fails, the city of Bryant's tax rate will not change," said Mayor Dabbs.

Some say it will ease minds.

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