Props Too Expensive and Go Too Far

RECEIVED Fri., May 12, 2006

Dear Editor,
    Mr. Black's column on Unreasonable Discourse [“Page Two,” May 12] is a welcome exposé of the true nature of the agenda of the SOS Alliance and its supporters. In their search for the Holy Grail of saving Barton Springs, they are willing to reek havoc with our elected officials and city staff and defame anyone and everyone who opposes them. They ignore the fact that all “deals” negotiated in secret, must be approved by council in open meetings. Ignoring the facts has always been one of their greatest strengths.
    Their real problem is they represent a very small minority of Austin citizens. They do not have the power to elect a majority to council to implement their agenda. Their alternative is to amend the charter, this eliminates the need to have their candidate scrutinized by all the citizens of Austin prior to being elected. Their amendments are long, confusing, poorly written, and impossible to effectively enforce, but their slogans of Open Government and Saving the Springs sound great. Sadly, if they are successful, the result will be millions wasted attempting to implement their plan, more millions in litigation by those damaged as a result of their plans, thousands of city staff hours wasted and the end of economic development in Austin. They hope this will hurt greedy developers, but in reality it will hurt Austin's workforce far more.
    Those supporting the defeat of Props 1 and 2, state the obvious: These amendments are too expensive and go too far. Sadly, these truths are not and have never been a concern of the SOS and its supporters.
Bill Lee
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