Petition Rights

We really DO want YOU…not to mention Joe Beal

This Monday night at 7 pm, join us in Bastrop at the First National Bank Community Room (in Screen Shot 2015-08-23 at 11.09.18 AMthe main bank across Hasler Blvd. from HEB). We have a rare opportunity to hear Austin developer-whistleblower, Brian Rodgers, tell us how we can avoid the same mistakes Austin made leading to their affordability collapse. Y’all come!!! Details here.

We will also give you the lowdown on how we’re going to open up and clean up the city of Bastrop’s governance by voting FOR Propositions 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 for “More Reasonable Petition Requirements”. That’s right, city of Bastrop voters will have to vote FIVE times to get their petition rights. Details here.

We will also explain to you what passing the bonds in Bastrop and Smithville will actually cost you.

Thanks to the Bastrop Advertiser!
Read our Op-Ed in today’s paper about why “I want Joe Beal!”

See you Monday, Bastrop. We really DO “want YOU”!

PS Campaign materials will be available at this event so you can pitch in to pass Props 1-5!

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COME TONIGHT — we’re not going away…far from it!

The Lost Pines Groundwater Conservation District meeting tonight at 6 pm at Bastrop City

The goose that laid the golden egg -- the Simsboro

The goose that laid the golden egg — the Simsboro

Hall (1311 Chestnut) is one of the most important meetings you’ll ever attend.

There has been much confusion about End Op, Forestar, Vista Ridge (the San Antone Hose) and so many other water deals for a reason. The Simsboro is under siege.

We live in an area of the state where the goose that laid the golden egg — our groundwater — is about to get choked to death. Others of you who live along the I-35 growth corridor are also about to get choked to death with mounting debt for infrastructure to make sure that we keep bringing masses of people here as quicklly as possible to feed the growth lobby. Simsboro water is integral to this “growth machine.”

Lost Pines GCD has also been under siege as well, and they are buckling. That shouldn’t surprise anyone. What is surprising is that we — residents and landowners — are not only still standing, we’re still fighting for the incoming and next generation — not to mention our property rights, ecosystems and local economies.

Details fom Enviromental Stewardship

Bring donations small or large for the new non-profit Simsboro Aquifer Water Defense Fund
and get ready for a whole new ballgame in the courts!

Quick note about the Bastrop City Council meeting last night: The petition games have started with lots of silliness to go around. Councilwoman Deborah Jones acted like she knew nothing about the “filers” of the petition — Independent Texans — or who I am. If memory serves us…here she is speaking at our candidate forum on April 18th sitting not 5 feet from me, the moderator.

Yes, we made a big mistake not endorsing Kelly Gilleland in that race. Bastrop is now paying for it but don’t worry, we will make amends in November and beyond with a whole new crop of people who are starting to pay attention.

Looking forward to seeing you tonight!

P.S. If you live in the city of Bastrop, please make plans to attend the next city council meeting — next Tuesday at 6:30 pm. More soon.

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Texans, armed with clipboards, can’t be beat!

Please read and share this message!

We need you at the Capitol this coming Monday at 9 am for a hearing on petitioning rights, AND

If you live in Lee or Bastrop counties (or are affected by the attempts to raid the Simsboro aquifer formation) show up on Wednesday night at 6 pm for what looks like THE FINAL decision on the End Op, L.P. mega-water permit! More…

Photo Credit:  Texas Tribune

Photo Credit: Texas Tribune

Folks, remember the nefarious attempt by Rep. Jim Keffer (R-Granbury) to gut our petition rights in the last legislative session? A broad coalition came together to stomp that bill to death in the Senate after it passed the House! Our “people’s check and balance” on local government — our rights to petition for a public vote — is to be protected, not attacked.

An important hearing of the Senate Committee on Intergovernmental Relations is taking place this coming Monday — with petition rights front and center. Come ye citizens of Texas!

Legislative Hearing, Monday, Aug. 15, 9 a.m. Details here.
Call us if you want to ride and/or to plan testimony.

Do you live in Lee or Bastrop County or depend on the Simsboro Aquifer?
Show up this Wednesday, August 10th at 6 pm!
Lost Pines Groundwater Conservation District Hearing
Bastrop City Hall, 1311 Chestnut, Bastrop, TX

End Op, L.P. may just finally wrest their mega-permit for the 46,000 acre-feet of groundwater per year out of the Lost Pines GCD.

donate_to_relief_fund_lg_clrOur communities across the region are gearing up to lawyer-up with the new non-profit Simsboro Aquifer Water Defense Fund. Show up and bring some money for the cause — and help get set for some big rounds in court.

Texans, armed with clipboards and a little cash, can’t be beat!

PS If you know any of the legislators on the Intergovernmental Relations Committee and can’t make the hearing, please send them an email or call them and tell them not to mess with our petition rights.

PPS If you like our Facebook page and share this post from there, it helps us reach thousands more people. Please do.

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Just filed our petition in Bastrop!

At approximately 10:30 am today, we filed our charter amendment petition with the City Screen Shot 2016-08-01 at 8.23.12 AMof Bastrop!

Click here to read our media release and a memorandum to Bastrop Mayor Ken Kesselus and the Bastrop City Council. It also contains the slide show linked under the picture to the right, “The Right to Petition: Bastrop Voters’ Source of Power to Take Back Their Town“. (You can also click on the picture to go directly to our slide show.)

Bastrop, the home of the water wars, is otherwise no different than many towns and cities across Texas. The “good ol’ boys” are running amok and you — and we at Independent Texans — do not have to put up with it. That’s because the people of Texas, in the late 1800s, had the good sense to build a movement for the right to petition for initiative, referendum and recall.

Share the materials and let us know how we can help you and yours take back your own town!

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Release: Charter Amendment Petition Filed in Bastrop

For Immediate Release                                                                        August 1, 2016  Screen Shot 2016-08-01 at 8.23.12 AM

Charter Amendment Petition Filed for
Reasonable Petition Requirements in City of Bastrop

Bastrop, Texas: At approximately 10:30 am, Independent Texans PAC filed signatures for a charter amendment to the Bastrop City Charter for “Reasonable Petition Requirements in the City of Bastrop” with Bastrop City Secretary, Ann Franklin. If petitioners meet the required 214 signatures, the measure will be certified by the City Secretary and the Bastrop Council must place the measure on the November ballot for a vote of the people. Bastrop city voters will then have the opportunity to vote on easing petition requirements for citizens’ initiatives, referenda and recalls. The group also announced the end of the petition to recall Bastrop Mayor Ken Kesselus, citing the city’s 25% petition hurdle as “draconian,” when most Texas cities require 10%.

“We offered to hold this charter amendment for the May election to give a charter revision committee appointed by the Council the time to review the city charter,” explained Linda Curtis, director of Independent Texans PAC. “However, this changed for us with City Attorney Jo-Christy Brown’s resignation this week, followed three hours later by that of the Interim City Manager, Chief Steve Adcock, a respected law enforcement official. Kesselus and his clan of self-interested influence peddlers like water marketer Joe Beal and recently retired Bluebonnet Electric Coop General Manager, Mark Rose, have pushed this city into a real crisis of confidence, and it is time to take action.”

Bastrop City Secretary, Ann Franklin, looking over the petitions for "Reasonable Petition Requirements"

Bastrop City Secretary, Ann Franklin, looking over the petitions for “Reasonable Petition Requirements”

In a memorandum to the Mayor, City Council and City Secretary that accompanied today’s filing, Independent Texans explained that this filing of 298 valid signatures is “a portion of the total signatures gathered and should readily meet the 214 signatures required for ballot certification.” The group did not reveal how many total signatures they have gathered for either petition.

The memorandum also spelled out in detail what the group believes the Council is legally bound to do and why they are prohibited by state and federal law from “playing petition games in order to deny Bastrop voters the right to vote for or against this amendment.” The memorandum stated that once the City Secretary certifies the signatures, the Council is bound to place the measure on the next available ballot – the November 8th election. The Council can do so at any upcoming meeting.

“After watching the recent actions of this mayor and council, I fully support this initiative to allow citizens a means to more easily recall self-serving or inept city officials, and to overrule their actions when they don’t match our citizens’ needs,” commented former Bastrop City Council Member Kelly Gilleland. “If these more realistic petition percentages were already in place, there would also have been enough signatures to initiate a recall on Kesselus. As it stands now, our elected officials know that the current charter makes it virtually impossible for recall, no matter how badly they behave. We don’t have to accept being treated like lowly serfs in a royal kingdom.”

At a recent City Council Meeting Councilman Willie DeLaRosa complained that a November city election could cost the city as much as $13,000. Today Curtis fired back, “What the city will spend on this election is less than the $17,500-plus the City has shelled out in legal fees dealing with Kesselus’ repeated attempts to circumvent the Ethics Ordinance, City Charter, and Texas Open Meetings Act. This Mayor and Council better not waste one penny fighting the rights of citizens to vote to secure their petition rights.”

The group also released a slide show entitled, “The Right to Petition: Bastrop Voters’ Source of Power to Take Back Their Town.” It explains some of the history of petition rights, starting with founding fathers Jefferson and Madison, the 1913 Texas constitutional amendment guaranteeing citizens living in home rule cities the right to petition and the details of their proposed amendment.

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For more information:
Linda Curtis
IndyTexans.org
512-535-0989 office
512-657-2089 cell

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Austin is Not Developers’ Monopoly Board

Sign it, if you live in Austin

Austin is Not Developers' Monopoly Board

Dear Mayor Adler and Austin City Council Members:

[signature]

Why don't you share this with your friends, please:

Make Growth Pay for Itself

No Vista Ridge/San Antone Hose

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