For the complete list of propositions and to find out where you can vote, visit:
Charter Election Informational Meetings
April 28 – 6 p.m. Christ Centered Missionary Baptist Church, 5205 Carol Ave.
April 30 – 10 a.m. University Christian Church, 2618 South University Drive
The decision to add more city council members, increase city officials’ salaries and make other changes to the Fort Worth City Charter is now in the hands of Fort Worth voters.
Early voting for the charter election began April 25 and ends May 3, with Election Day set for May 7. Voters will be asked to vote on 11 charter amendments.
One of those propositions is to add two more council members for a total of 11, including the mayor. If approved, the change will take effect on the first election after the 2020 census.
Another proposition is to increase council members’ salaries from $25,000 to $45,000 per year and to increase the mayor’s salary from $29,000 to $60,000 per year. If approved, the mayor and council members will receive their pay raise in October.
Voters will also consider increasing council member terms from two years to three years, a measure that would take effect after the 2017 election.
The other eight propositions involve charter provisions that contained old language, had inconsistencies with state law or were unused. For example, one proposition would clarify the language used to explain that a city council candidate must have lived in his or her district for at least 180 days before seeking election. Another proposition would remove provisions that conflict with state or federal law, including one that requires city employees to resign from their municipal jobs if they run for public office. A state law passed in 2013 allows candidates to hold a city job and run for office at the same time.
The city spent months holding meetings and public hearings to discuss what needed to be changed in the city charter. In July 2015 the council appointed an 11-member Charter Review Task Force to make recommendations on the amendments. The group studied the charters at other cities such as Dallas, Austin and San Antonio and also considered public comment. It then presented its proposed amendments to the council in December, and the city council voted in February to put the propositions on the May ballot.
“Council doesn’t always agree on these issues, and that’s great, everybody has their own opinion,” Mayor Betsy Price said. “But you, as our voters, should get educated, get your families educated, make the decisions that you think fit Fort Worth best and show up to the polls on May the 7th. Tell us what you want.”
The city plans to hold three meetings to inform the public about the charter election. The first meeting was held April 23 at the Hazel Harvey Peace Center for Neighborhoods, 818 Missouri Ave. The second meeting will be held April 28 at 6 p.m. at Christ Centered Missionary Baptist Church, 5205 Carol Ave. The final meeting will be held April 30 at 10 a.m. at University Christian Church, 2618 S. University Drive.