SAN ANTONIO - Big changes for the city are on the line, depending on how voters mark their ballots next month.
- Proposition A: Expand the types of ordinance, lower number of signatures
- Proposition B: Limit future city managers term and add salary cap
- Proposition C: Force city to resolve contract disputes with the fire union through arbitration
"This is about the future, and what is that future going to be like if these three proposals pass next month?” said John Courage, City Councilman, District 9.
On Monday night the local chapter of the League of Women Voters hosted a non-partisan town hall to educate voters on the three complex and controversial proposed amendments to the city’s charter.
“We just want to give the people the facts. What are the facts, and on the basis of the facts, we want them to make informed decisions,” said Madhu Sridar, League of Women Voters of the San Antonio Area president.
The event featured a panel with Richard Perez, the San Antonio Camber of Commerce president, and City Councilman John Courage arguing against the amendments and City Councilman Greg Brockhouse voicing support.
“Both sides have completely different visions for running the city, and we all, as citizens, we need to know the arguments and be able to ask questions,” Sridar said.
Proposition A would expand the types of ordinances that could be subject to a referendum, lower the number of signatures needed to 20,000 and increase the amount of time allotted to gather them.
"Tthe State of Texas says 20,000 signatures and 180 days is good enough to change your constitution, so why isn’t it good enough to work in the city of San Antonio,” said Greg Brockhouse, city councilman, District 6, in his support of the proposition.
Proposition B looks to limit future city managers to a term of 8 years total and a salary cap of ten times the pay of the city’s lowest-earning full-time employee.
“I say vote no, because if we vote yes, we will limit our ability to hire the best and the brightest to run the seventh-largest city in the nation that serves all of us as citizens of San Antonio,” said Richard Perez, San Antonio Chamber of Commerce president and CEO.
Proposition C would force the city to resolve contract disputes with the fire union through arbitration rather than in court.
“I see where the firefighters are coming from, they want to be in the best position they can be in for negotiation, but I just ask, what ever happened to collective bargaining?” said Courage.
On November 6, voters will select "for" or "against” for each of the three proposed amendments.