San Antonio voters have an $850 million decision to make in the next 22 days. The proposed 2017 Municipal Bond includes street, sidewalk, drainage, and park projects, as well as new facilities across the city. If approved, the City would, for the first time, fund the facilitation of dignified, affordable housing development in blighted neighborhoods.
But not everyone is on board.
To help citizens wade through the points and counterpoints, the Rivard Report is partnering with Alamo Beer Company to host the Bond and Brew edition of our Pints and Politics event series on Wednesday, April 19.
The event, at 415 Burnet St., is free and open to the public with a suggested $10 donation to the nonprofit, member-supported Rivard Report at the door. A cash bar will be available.
Our director Robert Rivard will moderate a panel discussion with former head of the local Tea Party George Rodriguez and Republican political consultant Carlton Soules, both outspoken opponents of the bond, and two bond advocates: OneSA Campaign Manager Christian Archer and 2017 Bond Tri-Chair Carri Baker, who also chairs the private political action committee.
The bond, which is broken up by project type into six propositions, has become a campaign issue for mayoral and City Council district candidates who also will appear on the ballot – some say the city is spending too much on nice-to-have projects instead of needs in certain areas of town, others say the City’s eyes are bigger than its debt service. Supporters say the historic bond balances critical infrastructure and transformative, citywide projects that will positively impact San Antonians’ day-to-day life and boost the city’s economy as it competes for jobs and private investment.
“Bond and Brew is the last chapter in what has been a two-year effort by the Rivard Report with various community partners to elevate public understanding and awareness of the City’s five-year bond programs,” Rivard said. “Voter turnout is historically so low, yet the bond is of great importance to citizens. This is how the City leverages its tax base, strong credit rating, and its borrowing capacity to invest in almost every aspect of the community. It’s not our job to tell citizens how to vote, but it is our job to motivate people to vote and to give them the credible information they need to make informed choices.”
Early voting begins Monday, April 24, and ends on Tuesday, May 2. Election day is Saturday, May 6. Click here for election information and sample ballots.
Team members from the RepresentSA voter engagement advocacy coalition also will be at the event. Attendees can find out more about the ThinkVoting mobile application aimed at increasing voter education and turnout. iPhone users will be able to view election information through the free app on Tuesday, April 18 and an Android version of the app will be completed soon.