Proposition 5

Highlights: Allows for cancellation of up to 3 meetings a year; Sets administrative process for temporary use of streets; Removes some lame duck provisions; Streamlines the ordinance process

Amended Text
Amending the Charter of the City of El Paso Section 3.3, Subsection C, Prohibitions; Section 3.5, Subsection A, City Council Procedures and Rules; Section 3.9, Subsection B, Ordinances in General; Section 3.17, Annexation of Territory; and Section 3.18, Lease; Franchise; and Conveyance; and deleting Sections 3.13 B 4 and 3.19 in their entirety; to read as follows:

Section 3.3, Subsection C PROHIBITIONS.
C. "Lame Duck" Elected Officers Not to Make Appointments.

A. Meetings. Regular meetings of the Council shall be held in Council chambers a minimum of one time per week at such times as may be prescribed by resolution. Provided however, that the Council by resolution may cancel one or more regular meetings, not to exceed three meetings during each calendar year, provided that such canceled meetings are not consecutive. Special meetings and informal work sessions of the Council shall be called by the Mayor or a majority of the entire Council by giving written notice to the City Clerk. All meetings of the Council and of any committees thereof shall be held as permitted by the Texas Open Meetings Act.

Section 3.9, Subsection B ORDINANCES IN GENERAL.
B. Legislative Procedure. Except as provided in Section 3.13, an ordinance may be introduced by any Council member at any meeting of the Council. A proposed ordinance must be filed with the City Clerk in sufficient time for inclusion on the agenda for the Council meeting at which it is to be introduced. Upon such filing the City Clerk shall distribute copies to each member of the Council and to the City Manager. A reasonable number of copies shall be available in the office of the City Clerk, and at such other public places as the Council may designate, for examination by interested persons. No ordinance shall be adopted finally except at a regular open meeting of the Council following notice, publication, and a public hearing. The notice shall contain:
  1. The proposed ordinance or a brief summary thereof;
  2. The places where copies of it have been filed and the times when they are available for public examination; and
  3. The time and place for the public hearing. The notice shall be published by any contemporary means of information sharing, including but not limited to publication in a newspaper of general circulation in the City or placement on a web site at least five days prior to the public hearing. The hearing may be held by a designated Council committee or the Council separately or in connection with any Council meeting and may be adjourned to a specified time. All interested persons present shall have an opportunity to be heard. As soon as practicable after adoption of any ordinance, the City Clerk shall publish it again, with notice of its adoption, in abstract form, by any contemporary means of information sharing. These abstracts must state, at a minimum, the purpose of the ordinance and, where penal, the penalty provided. In any event, the publication must be written so as to be understood by an average person.
The Council may, by ordinance, fix or extend the boundaries of the City and may also, by ordinance, annex or exchange territory adjoining or abutting upon the territory of the City. The territory so annexed shall, in all respects and for all purposes, be part of the City. In no event shall an annexation ordinance be passed without notice, published in accordance with state law, to the residents of the City and of the territory to be annexed, nor without a meeting of the Council at which proponents and opponents of the annexations must be given ample opportunity to express their views.

The right of control, ownership and use of streets, alleys, parks and public places of the City is declared to be inalienable except as provided by ordinance passed by the Council and except for uses of less than thirty days which may have a separate approval process as established by ordinance. Any ordinance providing for the conveyance, lease, or grant of a franchise regarding the property of the City shall provide for payment to the City of a reasonable fee as consideration for that conveyance, lease, or franchise. In addition, any ordinance providing for the lease or franchise shall provide that: 1. At the termination of the lease or franchise, the property involved, together with any improvements thereto, made or erected during the term of the lease or franchise, shall (either without further compensation or upon payment of a fair valuation therefore as determined by the terms of the ordinance), become the property of the City; and 2. Every lease or franchise may be revoked by the City if necessary to secure efficiency of public service at a reasonable rate, or to assure that the property is maintained in good order throughout the life of the grant.

Proposition Question
Ballot Proposition No. 5

FOR ( ) Shall Sections 3.3 C, 3.5 A, 3.9 B, 3.17, and 3.18 of the City Charter be amended, and Sections 3.13 B 4, and 3.19 be deleted in their entirety, relating to Council procedures and requirements relating to certain contracts, ordinances and uses of City streets: to allow for the cancellation of not more than three regular Council meetings annually; to expand methods of publication for notification of proposed ordinances and reduce the time for notification by two days; to eliminate the requirement to read ordinances aloud; to allow limited uses of City streets through a process established by ordinance; to remove the provision limiting leases and franchises to a period of thirty years; to remove the prohibitions against entering into most contracts over $3000 between the date of the election and the inauguration of those elected; to provide that an annexation ordinance may include territory exchanges, and that all required notices be published in accordance with state law; to delete the provision regarding the enactment of ordinances requiring the construction of drainage systems; and shall Section 3.18 be renamed as Lease; Franchise; and Conveyance, and that the remaining provisions in Title III renumbered as appropriate?