City does not give up

Today’s question is “why did the city choose to take the performing arts center lawsuit to Austin instead of fighting the issue here in an El Paso court”?

Could it be that they wanted to avoid local public input by using our money to move the issue out of town and thus keeping locals who could not afford to travel to Austin from showing up to testify?

Or could it be that the city thought they would get a more enlightened judge in Austin–one who believed that governments can do whatever they want regardless of what the citizens ask for?

Or might it be that they wanted a judge that was ignorant of the actual facts surrounding the bond election.  Quite simply the issue was placed on the ballot as a “performing arts facility”, not a sports arena.

Either way, the judge saw through the baloney that the city was serving up.

The judge was quite clear in her ruling and in fact blocked what might have been one of the city’s strategies.  In addition to ruling that the city cannot build a facility that is suitable for a sports arena, she ordered that the city cannot use funds from sources other than the bond issue to modify or enhance the facility to make it suitable as a sports arena in the future.

Our new mayor was quoted in a Times article the other day as saying “The wording in her judgment is awfully ambiguous–it’s gray; it’s unclear”.

It seemed pretty clear to us but then again we did not completely lose the case like the city did.

Using our money to fight us

News reports have told us that the city has already spent over $800,000 fighting us.

The city says that their next action will be to appeal the judges ruling.

Presumably the appeal will be in Austin.

Hopefully common sense will continue to prevail.

We deserve better

Brutus

11 Responses to City does not give up

  1. Anonymous says:

    Elections have consequences and in El Taxo they have MULTI-MILLION$$$$ consequences when the CRIMINAL politicians, Public Officials get through with US, the “Stupid, ignorant peons of El Taxo. The Arena THEY want is just another scam like the Cook, Wilson, City Council baseball field THEY FORCED taxpayers to buy for the local BILLIONAIRE. “Stupid, ignorant peons” voted to increase the hotel tax. Ah but they forget to read the “Small print”. What WE really voted for was to build a MULTI-MILLION$$$$$ baseball field for a sports combine and the local BILLIONAIRE, which of course continues to grow in PRICES for US to pay. The elected, NON-elected “Officials” in El Taxo are just one big criminal empire, who take all that THEY can get from US. Hopefully the Judge , Judges in Austin will continue to see that. Margo is just another tool in that criminal empire. He does not REPRESENT US.

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  2. JerryK says:

    Does anyone recall what the actual wording was on the ballot for the Foster-Plaza Hotel-tax-break center?

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    • abandon hope says:

      Here’s the ballot from the 2012 bond election.

      PROPOSITION
      PARK, RECREATION, OPEN SPACE AND ZOO IMPROVEMENTS

      “THE ISSUANCE OF $245,000,000 GENERAL OBLIGATION BONDS FOR PARK, RECREATION, OPEN SPACE AND ZOO IMPROVEMENTS, INCLUDING SOCCER/SPORTS FIELDS, AQUATIC CENTERS, AND NEW AND IMPROVED RECREATION, SENIOR AND COMMUNITY CENTERS.”

      PROPOSITION
      MUSEUM, CULTURAL, PERFORMING ARTS, AND LIBRARY FACILITIES

      “THE ISSUANCE OF $228,250,000 GENERAL OBLIGATION BONDS FOR MUSEUM, CULTURAL, MULTI-PURPOSE PERFORMING ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT AND LIBRARY FACILITIES IMPROVEMENTS, INCLUDING NEW CHILDREN’S MUSEUM, CULTURAL HERITAGE CENTER AND INTERACTIVE DIGITAL WALL.”

      PROPOSITION
      VENUE PROJECT AND HOTEL OCCUPANCY TAX

      “AUTHORIZING THE CITY OF EL PASO, TEXAS, TO DESIGNATE THE MINOR LEAGUE BASEBALL STADIUM PROJECT AS A SPORTS AND COMMUNITY VENUE PROJECT WITHIN THE CITY
      IN ACCORDANCE WITH APPLICABLE LAW AND TO IMPOSE A TAX ON THE OCCUPANCY

      OF A ROOM IN A HOTEL LOCATED WITHIN THE CITY, AT THE MAXIMUM RATE OF TWO PERCENT (2%) OF THE PRICE PAID FOR SUCH ROOM, FOR THE PURPOSE OF FINANCING SUCH VENUE PROJECT.”

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      • JerryK says:

        Thanks, Hope. I guess Mayor Margo thinks that sports qualifies as a performing art. I mean, we all know what this thing is really for. He is being disingenuous to call the judge’s decision ambiguous when the ballot itself does not mention sports at all.

        Just “multipurpose” which, I suppose, could mean anything.

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        • abandon hope says:

          And the mayor complains about how much the lawsuit has cost the City. The City can keep raising taxes, never balance a budget, hire consultant after consultant — yet when citizens fight back the mayor says it is our fault the City spends so much. I was hoping for better from this mayor.

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  3. old gringo says:

    Is anyone actually surprised the city clown crew took the case to Austin? They have no fear of spending the taxpayer’s money on frivolous, pie-in-the-sky crap. All they have to do is raise taxes or issue more certificates of obligation to cover the stupid crap,like bike lanes (where you never see a bicycle) or Cohen Stadium (now sitting empty and unused) or big busses that bend in the middle (that no one rides) and let us not forget the trolley that doesn’t go anywhere.

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  4. Mr. T says:

    What a better way to see how our city reps are influenced by big money investors who are the ones who want this facility near their investments (ballpark, hotels,), rather than build somewhere else. Also instead of dropping the idea or developing a performing arts facility, they are influenced by these investors to appeal.

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  5. Maximvs says:

    Very well stated! Of course, the City’s legal bills for their “Arena” have now exceeded $1 million.

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  6. Rodney Fender says:

    Since the local taxing authorities (city, county, EPISD, and Medical Center) have no financial responsibility to us (the taxpayers) I have filed the form necessary to not pay property tax. They can have my homestead house when I die.
    If you are 65 or older or disabled I can show you how.

    Like

  7. abandon hope says:

    Well said. And I really wish our new mayor had said accepted the ruling and not lashed out at the opponents of the stadium location. Trying to place blame on others rather than the City and City Attorney is a transparent ploy that makes the mayor look bad.

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  8. I agree totally with your take on this issue. For some reason (that certainly must be beyond the ken of us ordinary suckers….er, um, taxpayers (I meant to say taxpayers), elected representatives of this city have decided that the voters who did bother to vote had voted for an arena, when that was not the case. And, for some other reason, the elected representatives think that the ballot in 2012 said something about how this facility has to be downtown (it doesn’t). So, they have now wasted more than five years of time, and hundreds of thousands of OUR dollars on pushing for something that nobody wants! El Paso style logic?

    Like

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