Fairly Says Civic Center Vote Passed Unfairly—Sues City
The Civic Center is such a controversial topic. It has been a thorn in the side of a lot of people here in Amarillo.
Let's face it we need an updated Civic Center, but how are we going to get it. The Prop A Bond was put before the voters in Amarillo in 2020 and they voted the proposition down. Their voice was heard and it was a big NO!
It was placed back into the hands of the City. The City Council either needed to let the idea of the Civic Center remodel go or find a way to get it done without taxing the citizens of Amarillo.
The City Council did not let the idea go. Instead, they decided to move forward with a new idea, and a way to do it without having the citizens of Amarillo vote on it. On May 24th the Amarillo City Council held a vote to approve $260 million in tax and revenue notes.
So what exactly are these notes? I myself had to do some research to find out.
According to Investopedia:
An anticipation note a short-term debt security issued by a state or local government to raise money for a public project. The debt is repaid with future tax collections.
By approving this, the taxpayers of Amarillo will still end up footing the bill for a new civic center.
So that brings us to now, Alex Fairly suing the City of Amarillo.
According to a statement from Mr. Fairly on InspireAmarillo.com
The new proposal was largely developed behind the scenes, out of sight from the public. It was approved with no advance notice to the public or opportunity for input.
What are we looking at as a taxpayer now that the City Council vote has already been passed?
Unless the City of Amarillo can find private funders to help back the remodel of the Civic Center (which at the time of the vote, they hadn't found any), the citizens of Amarillo will be footing the bill by having their property taxes increased down the line.
Fairly went on to say the reason he is suing:
Going against the wishes of the voters isn’t the only mistake the Amarillo City Council made when they approved the issuance of more than a quarter-billion dollars in debt on May 24.
Having to bring a lawsuit is never a preferred option. It will cost both the city, and me. But core American principles are worth defending.
As a taxpayer and a citizen of Amarillo, what can we do? When I read about this, I feel as if our leaders are sneakily and underhandedly going behind our backs even after voters said no.
Again, I wholeheartedly believe that the Amarillo Civic Center needs to be updated, but I also believe that we as citizens right now are struggling to put food on our tables and gas in our vehicles. This is not the time to force us to pay more property taxes to foot the bill for a new Civic Center, especially after the citizens voted against it.
At the rate things are going, we are going to be taxed right out of our homes because we won't be able to afford our mortgages anymore.