Editor's note: THis story was originally posted on May 2. Additional information was added on May 3. An additional correction on the amount of the bond from $128 million to $123.8 million was added on May 5.
The future facilities available for education in the Aledo Independent School District lie in the hands of voters who will decide the fate of a $123.8 million bond issue on Saturday, May 6. Early voting ended May 2.
Residents who live in the school district have received conflicting messages from at least two, and maybe three, political action committees (PACs) during the course of the campaign.
Due to the importance of the issue, The Community News reached out to the various committees to see if more information could be gleaned from those supporting and those opposing the bond.
Political Action Committee finance reports were due to be filed with the Texas Ethics Commission on April 28.
In terms of tracking the source of funds used by the competing PACs, the pro-bond PAC, Bearcats Supporting Greatness 2023, reported contributions of $1,530 from 33 donors and a loan of $2,928.18.
All contributors to the pro-bond PAC showed addresses in Aledo, Weatherford, and Fort Worth. The treasurer was listed as Peter R. Healey of Aledo.
Healy told The Community News he provided the loan to the group in order to purchase “Vote Yes!” signage.
“I incurred that cost personally because I purchased the signs prior to any fundraising,” Healy said. “Adding more context, those signs were purchased from Aledo Branding Company as we also try to support local business in this effort.”
One of the PACs opposing the bond, Concerned Parents of Aledo ISD, had not filed its contributor report as of press time.
The Texas Ethics Commission PAC database shows the address of the treasurer of the Concerned Parents of Aledo to be the same address as Pale Horse Strategies, LLC, a political consulting firm whose registered agent is former Texas State Representative Jonathan Stickland.
The treasurer of the Concerned Parents PAC is listed as William Taylor, but no contact information is provided. Neither is telephone or email information listed in open records on how to contact Pale Horse Strategies.
The Community News visited the website of the Concerned Parents of Aledo, but that website did not provide any contact information. Finally, we conducted a registrar search of the Concerned Parents website, which showed the registrant contact address to be in Reykjavik (capital of Iceland), but contact information was withheld.
The possible third PAC in the mix is called “Leading Local,” which sent mailers out opposing the bond.
Leading Local is not registered as a political action committee in the Texas Ethics Commission database.
Leading local's website is "coming soon" and has no contact information.
We searched the internet database to see who the non-working website is registered to, but all contact information in the registry is redacted.
To view the finance reports of the two registered PACs, visit https://www.ethics.state.tx.us/search/cf/SimpleSearch.php, click “By Filer Name,” then type in either “Bearcats Supporting Greatness” or “Concerned Parents of Aledo” then click “Search."
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