Banking on the history of Cabot citizens supporting improvement projects for the city, Mayor Bill Cypert is forging ahead with the 2013 sales and use tax re-funding and improvement bonds.

The bond would fund nearly $40 million in projects such as the North Interchange, between Cabot and Austin on U.S. Highway 67/167, and the Parks and Recreation commission plans for expanded facilities.

“I, to make it clear, there is no new sales tax,” Cypert said. The bond would be an extension of the one-cent sales tax that has been in place since 1999. The sales tax has been used for a number of projects, including the community center, since it was approved by voters, Cypert said. Voting on the issue would be in April.

“I personally think it is a bridge to the future for Cabot, Arkansas,” Cypert said.

All six projects to be funded have been chosen, Cypert said.

The overall project will be coordinated by the mayor and staff, aided by a task force made up of a cross-section of area leaders including city council members, commissioners, school staff, chamber of commerce members, and others as needed, Cypert said.

When the issue goes before voters, there will be two segments to choose from, Cypert said.

The first will be whether or not to re-fund the bond issue. “If that doesn’t pass the second part doesn’t matter,” he said.

The second part will list the six projects, with each to be voted upon, Cypert said. “[Voters] can vote up or down on any of the projects,” he said.

The projects are: North terminal interchange and connection to Arkansas Highway 38 - $9.5 million; Highlands drainage - $500,000; library expansion and renovation $2.6 million; Community center expansion and renovation $3.95 million; Four-Mile creek gravity sewer - $8.2 million; parks and recreation new infrastructure - $15 million.

Parks and Recreation improvements would include a baseball complex, water park, and two softball fields at Allman-Bevis Park, as well as other recreational activities, Cypert said.

Community center expansion and renovation is separate from the repairs slated for the center, Cypert said.

The renovations would include significant expansion of banquet facilities to support at least 600, and larger exercise areas. The banquet area would include kitchen areas and a full stage. “That has the potential for future use by the Cabot community theatre, he said.