TONTITOWN, Ark. — Election results: The fire, sewer and water improvement bonds had a majority vote of yes. Ordinance No. 13 and the refunding bonds also gained a majority vote in favor.
Tontitown residents are being asked to vote in a special election this month to decide on a new fire station for the city, plus sewer and water improvements.
The election asks voters to decide on a bond reallocation to pay off an existing bond, which allows the city to refinance funds to pay for several projects. The bond will not increase sales tax for Tontitown residents.
The City of Tontitown has grown 107% in less than seven years. The latest census says the city has around 4,300 citizens but Mayor Paul Colvin suspects it’s much higher because of new apartments and homes that have gone up since the census was conducted in April of 2020.
“Since that date, we’ve added some 2,000 more citizens to our town. We think our citizen count is somewhere between the 6,000 to 8,000 range currently and in the next 15 years we’re scheduled to be 35,000 people in Tontitown,” said Mayor Colvin.
Because of this growth, the city wants to make improvements to its water and sewer systems and build a new fire station to better protect its residents and businesses. With this bond, there will be no sales tax increase but with the new bond, they would use $5.2 million to build the new fire station. Chairman of Tontitown city council, Gene McCartney says the new station would be built behind the city park.
“With the population being so large, we would like to add facilities for them to be able to respond 24/7 to calls within the city without relying on the volunteers as much,” Colvin said.
Having this new fire station along with improvements to the city’s water system, would potentially decreasing people’s insurance rates. From the bond, the city would spend $8 million dollars for water and sewer improvements. The Springdale School District opened Rollins School of Innovation this year and Colvin says they’d like to be able to provide sewer to the surrounding neighborhoods.
“As well as put new sewer systems out west where we see growth potential with the new highway 612 coming in. There are lots of projects we could do for the city. Right now, with interest rates as cheap as they are, we are trying to leverage the money to be able to put these things in place instead of paying three times the cost in the future,” Colvin said.
Voting on election day will be held at St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Tontitown from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.
You can check your voter registration status here.
For more information about the bond issue, please visit the Washington County Election Commission's website.