FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – Tarrant County voters on Tuesday approved Proposition A, authorizing the issuance of $800 million in bonds to acquire, construct, improve, equip or enlarge facilities of the Tarrant County Hospital District, operating as the JPS Health Network.
The bond, which does not require a tax increase, includes a new mental and behavioral health hospital, a new hospital tower, a new cancer center, four new regional health centers and a new ambulatory surgical center, the Tarrant County Administrator’s Office said in a news release Tuesday night.
“We continue to build our health infrastructure in an efficient and conservative manner. Our pledge to the voters is that we will do this with no tax rate increase,” said Tarrant County Judge Glen Whitley. “We thank the voters for their confidence in Proposition A and the future of healthcare in our great county.”
It is anticipated the bonds approved by the voters will be issued in multiple series over the next several years.
The prices, rates, and maturities of each issuance will remain subject to the approval of the Tarrant County Commissioners Court.
The Court said its intent to be fiscally responsible in the issuance of bonds and is committed to only issue bonds if the Hospital District has the capacity to repay the bonds without a tax rate increase.
Robert Earley, President and CEO of the JPS Health Network said in a statement:
Thank you, Tarrant County! Our community handed JPS Health Network a huge vote of confidence on Election Day by approving the largest bond in county history — and the first one for the Tarrant County Hospital District in 33 years. We are honored and grateful to serve a community that appreciates the healthcare JPS has provided for more than 110 years. We remain committed to making lives better for our patients and our community — today and for decades to come.
Because the voters trust in their publicly supported healthcare system, JPS will be able to not only improve patient care but will leverage the bond money to bring in new revenue through creative public-private partnerships.
Our more than 6,500 team members thank the Tarrant County Commissioners Court and members of the Citizens Blue Ribbon Committee (CBRC) who dedicated long hours to thoughtfully research future healthcare needs in our community. In coming days, the Hospital District Board of Managers, along with the Commissioners Court and JPS administration, will move forward to prioritize the recommendations of the CBRC – four additional community-based health centers, a new mental and behavioral health hospital, a new in-patient tower, a new cancer center and a new day surgery center.