City Charter amendment passes 581-556
By Matt Ward —
Three new council members were elected and the first amendment to the city charter was passed by 25 votes Saturday in the City of Fredericksburg election held at Fredericksburg Middle School.
Of the city’s 7,512 registered voters, only 16 percent (or 1,212 voters) actually cast their ballot in this year’s election.
“I think that this election was more about the incumbents than it was about the amendment,” charter amendment organizer Isabel Wertz said. “I hope that the city will be more thoughtful in the future of how the revenue of the city is being spent.”
Former mayor Linda Langerhans defeated current mayor Jeryl Hoover 687-494, while Jerry Luckenbach and Bobby Watson were elected to replace current council members Tim Dooley and Kathy Sanford.
Luckenbach led the council candidates with 683 votes, with Watson in second with 657 votes and incumbent Dooley in third with 513 votes. Sanford chose not to run for re-election.
“It’s going to be incumbent on the three new council members to get updated as soon as possible because they’re going to be dealing with these issues in the next several months,” City Manager Kent Myers said Monday. “There are a lot of things going on and so I’m going to have to spend a lot of time with the three new council members bringing them up to date.”
Agendas for the next two council meetings — slated for May 19 and June 2 — will likely be lighter than usual as the new council gets acclimated. The first council retreat with the newly elected officials is tentatively set for June 13.
“I think the council’s positions on certain issues will change with three new council members. The message I’ve sent to staff is that ‘You’ll have to be adaptable to that change and understanding of that,’” Myers said. “Whenever you have a majority of the council that turns over, there could be a new direction on some of these issues, whether it’s lighting standards or property tax collection. We want to try and get a feel for that as soon as possible so we don’t go down the path even further if the majority of the council doesn’t agree with that direction.”
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