City to voters: Pass amendment and we may sue

By Matt Ward —

Though voters will maintain the option of regulating city financial policy during a charter amendment election this May, a new fact sheet approved by the Fredericksburg City Council Monday evening during their regular meeting warns that legal action might be taken if the amendment is passed.

A citizen’s group requested the amendment after $2.75 million of outstanding debt from electric department advances to Lady Bird Johnson Municipal Golf Course was wiped off the books by the city council in March 2013.

Amendment in question

The charter amendment would prevent the city from using “proceeds or reserves from an enterprise fund (including but not limited to the electric, water and sewer, solid waste, and drainage funds) except for expenditures within the purpose of the fund unless approved by the voters in elections that specify the amount and the fund from which the money will be withdrawn.”

According to the fact sheet, which is online at www.fbgtx.org, city officials state that litigation may be necessary to “interpret the meaning of the charter amendment to ensure compliance” as well as to “determine if the amendment would be constitutional and enforceable under Texas law.”

City officials also said that over 15 percent of general fund revenues marked as “in lieu of tax revenues paid by each enterprise fund” would be in jeopardy as well.

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