I believe the Chronicle
’s endorsement of Proposition 4 (creating a hybrid City Council) is misplaced and unworkable for ensuring the proper geographic and diversity representation of Austin [“Nov. 6 Elections: The 'Chronicle' Endorsements
,” News, Oct. 19]. Proposition 3, which creates 10 geographic districts and the mayor elected at-large, is the only viable alternative.
I served on a city commission in the past that considered the matter. Most of our members favored the hybrid initially, but after studying the issue and holding hearings around the city, we decided unanimously that only a measure like Proposition 3 would actually work. Our decision was the same as similar commissions in the past, but always disregarded by the mayor and council.
Unless we have single-member districts, which candidates can actually “walk” and limit their money to, we will have big money dominate the council majority. The tired old canard that districts lead to ward politics is disproven by the experience of thousands of other single-member jurisdictions around Texas and the country. Democratic accountability is key, and single-member representation is the only way.
The hybrid Proposition 4 is just a “kind and gentle” way for the good ol’ boys to stay in power. Proposition 3 is the only way to go.