I am appalled over the actions the Rockport City Council appeared ready to take in reaction to the certified petition that resulted in having the $20.75M CO bond added to the May election allowing Rockport citizens a vote.
The Council has an agenda item on Monday’s (8/30) special meeting to issue an ordinance for municipal debt that is paid off by tax revenues. They are saying this method is justified because the $14.72M is required immediately to construct the new City Hall ($11.77M), address drainage issues ($2.3M) and purchase easements for the Key Allegro Bridge ($.65M) due to Hurricane Harvey.
I was fortunate to serve as an elected town councilman for four years in the Dallas area and understand the position requires making tough decisions. I was never able to make everyone happy all the time, but I did vote my conscience. In this case, my conscience would not be at ease saying the City Hall is an emergency.
Major expenditures such as a City Hall should never be considered emergency spending or done outside normal approval processes; the City can continue to function in current buildings until funds are approved via a bond election in May. Issuing funds for the bridge and drainage projects is something that could be construed as an emergency; utilizing Tax Notes for these two projects ($2.95M) is a Council action I support. Utilizing a Tax Note to replace the City Hall as an emergency is a gross misuse of the elected officials’ power.