Amarillo voters are pushing back against the Amarillo City Council’s unprecedented November propositions election to issue $275 million in debt for downtown projects, extend their terms by two years, and cut their meeting calendar in half.

A group of Amarillo voters calling themselves “Save Amarillo” are organizing a formal campaign to defeat the city council’s propositions this year. Hobert “Gunny” Brown, who is one of the campaign’s organizers, says he believes Amarillo voters should understand the ballot issues before voting.

“I feel that the two-year terms are sufficient for elected officials of Amarillo. As far as the bonds go: simply, we are broke,” Brown said.

Save Amarillo’s chairman, attorney Len Walker, echoed Brown, saying voters need to consider the consequences of passing the propositions.

“The current plan for the civic center put forth by the city council fails to address future needs, and the projected costs will create a ridiculous tax burden on the citizens,” Walker said. “This is going to result in a massive flight from Amarillo and prevent any reasonable hope of attracting business investment.”

Young Amarillo voters are also pushing back against the propositions, organizing a new political group called Youth for an Accountable Amarillo. The group’s founder and chairman, Noah Dawson, said he feels the choice should be clear for Amarillo voters.

“It’s more of the same kind of bad policy city council has been pushing since elected,” Dawson said. “They are asking for more money, more power, and less accountability.”

The elections on the three propositions are expected to play out in a heated campaign ahead of the November general election.

Early voting for the November 3 election runs from October 13-30.

Thomas Warren

Thomas Warren, III is the editor-in-chief of the Amarillo Pioneer newspaper in Amarillo, Texas.


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