Three Rivers ISD reaps benefits of Eagle Ford Shale

UTSA generates $87 billion, helps local school district

SAN ANTONIO – There are benefits to living within the Eagle Ford Shale production area.

A study released Tuesday by the University of Texas at San Antonio Institute for Economic Development states that the shale field generated more than $87 billion in total economic output for the state last year.

Three Rivers Independent School District Superintendent Kenneth Rohrbach said because of a bigger tax base from the output of Eagle Ford Shale, the district was able to build and open a brand-new high school with state-of-the-art equipment.

"Eagle Ford Shale has had a huge impact on us," said Rohrbach. "Just a few years ago, the property value of the school district was about $500 million. This year, the property value of our school district is $2.7 billion, is what we're collecting taxes on."

Thirteen months ago, the district opened a brand-new Three Rivers Junior/Senior High School.

"The school board saw this as a wonderful opportunity to build new buildings, to replace buildings that were built in the '40s and early '50s and truly needed to be replaced in the community," said Rohrbach.

Students, parents and staff said Wednesday that they're proud of their new school.

"I think the new school is great," said Rosa Morin, a grandparent. "I think this is what they needed and we're very proud of our school and the kids are doing well and the school is doing well. We're just glad that Eagle Ford is here."

However, with a growing community, comes some growing pains.

Rohrbach said housing is short and what is available is extremely expensive, so he said the district is going after another bond in November to build some homes for their staff.

They're also looking to build a new baseball and softball field.

For now, construction is underway on a brand-new elementary school.

Rohrbach said they expect this school to open sometime in August of next year.

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