In these difficult times, the wants-to-be-a-city of The Woodlands is calling on its citizenry to help it through its hour of need.
Citing turbulence in the financial markets, The Woodlands Township, a special district with limited governing power, is turning to residents to help raise about $18 million as a down payment to becoming a city.
The township board unanimously voted Wednesday to issue bonds to mostly individual investors because large institutional investors, strapped for cash, have backed out of the municipal bond market.
''I'm not excited about the market but I feel very comfortable about the township's opportunity to sell our bonds," said board chairwoman Nelda Blair.
''We're really lucky we have as many potential investors that are our neighbors," she said. "We have a great mix of big businesses, individual residents and everything in between."
The bond money would be used to make the township's first lump sum payments to the cities of Houston and Conroe as required under regional participation agreements.
The bonds would be issued on Oct. 21 or 22. The township is scheduled to make its payment of $16 million to Houston and $320,000 to Conroe by Nov. 16. If the township is unable to execute the terms of the bond issue, it will call a special meeting and look at its options.