Criminalize homeless: AGAINST
Police oversight: FOR
Mayoral voting calendar: FOR
Ranked choice voting in city elections: FOR
“Strong mayor”: AGAINST
This will allow firefighters and the city to have a third party arbitrate contract disputes. San Antonio has done it, and it’s much faster and efficient. Downside to the city is that they have less control over firefighter salaries and benefits. My answer to that is that if a neutral third party shows the evidence of what is fair and appropriate for both sides, it takes the issue out of the political and into the practical.
If you don’t like homeless people blocking the view, then support solutions to the lack of affordable housing in Austin, not punitive measures that merely make it harder for people to live.
This makes police oversight more independent than it is today. The current oversight is under the purview of the City Manager, who has been fairly lousy when it comes to police reform. New Orleans and Seattle have this more progressive model and it makes oversight less subject to political pressure.
This puts the mayoral elections on the same cycle as national presidential ones. This increases turnout and who doesn’t want more of that? Oh, wait. The GOP doesn’t want that. Should let you know who the good guys are.
This lets the voters pick from the field and rank them from most to least favorite. Why is a listicle good for democracy? Because it eliminates runoff elections. People vote once and the top vote getter gets the win. Election fatigue is real. If people don’t have to come back to the polls, we get a more efficient system. The downside? Educating voters about how this system works and why it is a good thing will take some time, and the bullies of Texas state government will likely claim this change to the system is not legal, merely to further quash anything that looks less like the minority rule that has been enshrined by Texas’ fine tradition of voter suppression.
We need to learn from the nightmare years of Trump/Bush - accountability is good for everyone and strong executives are a disaster (remember Abbot’s horrible handling of the pandemic and the freeze). I like Mayor Adler and think he’s done a fabulous job during the pandemic despite the harassment by Abbot and assorted criminal stooges in state office and in the legislature. But we need checks and balances, and especially we need civil servants that are less influenced by the political winds blowing. This would also be a good time to suggest we replace the current City Manager with someone who is capable of taking on the issue of policing in this city.