Street improvements, repairing local swimming pools, and an animal shelter were just some of the possible items that were discussed for a possible bond election in Lubbock. The opinions of the council whether or not the election should be held in May were mixed. Three members were in favor and four were against.
Andy Turner is the President of the 34th Street Association, for years he has been working to get improvements made to 34th Street. On Thursday the Lubbock City Council decided not to hold a bond election in May, which would have allowed voters to decide which city projects to start. "Certainly we are disappointed. We feel like the voters should have a say in this matter and May 2009 would have been the perfect opportunity for that to happen," said Turner.
Although most of the council agreed 34th Street does need improvements, they say right now may not be the best time. "When you are looking at a bond election that is going to require a property tax increase of at least four cents, given the national economy and the mood of people right now, trying to predict how that mood is going to feel by the voters in May is just too difficult," said Mayor Tom Martin.
And there were certainly mixed feelings about whether or not voters wanted a bond election. "I know you guys have the same situations when you are out in public people will come up to you and say I really think you guys need to do this or less of that. I have never had any one once say to me that we shouldn't be doing 34th Street," said Councilman Todd Klein.
"I just have to be honest; no one is asking me to have an election. No one is asking for a bond election, I am just not hearing that," said Councilman John Leonard.
The majority of council members voted against a May bond election, while Todd Klein, Paul Beane, and Floyd Price voted in favor. However the Mayor says it would be better to wait and appoint a citizen's advisory committee to look at a range of needs that would possibly appear on a ballot. "I think everybody can get behind a November bond election," said Martin.
Turner is just hoping November will be the month for 34th Street. "We'll keep plugging along and re-gather our troops and go for a November election," said Turner.
Councilman Todd Klein was in favor of the May bond election, and now he says he wants to make sure it will happen in November. He hopes to get the ball rolling at the next city council meeting to lay the groundwork.
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