Lubbock Mayor Dan Pope joined in with 17 other mayors from across Texas in requesting a meeting with Texas Governor Greg Abbott. In a letter dated July 17th, the mayors cite Abbott's call for the legislature to address issues during the special session which the mayors believe would harm Texas cities.

With the special session of the Texas Legislature kicking off on Tuesday, the spotlight will once again be on local control and issues such as annexation and property taxes. Many locally elected officials from around the state have been opposed to S.B. 2 which if passed would mean an election would be automatically triggered if a taxing entity increases property taxes by more than 5%.

In the letter, the mayors say that "revenue and spending caps" along with other proposals would be harmful.

To prepare for this rapid growth, we must continue to have the tools to manage our budgets, improve infrastructure, provide critical services like public safety and pass policies reflective of local resident priorities. Harmful proposals such as revenue and spending caps, limiting annexation authority and other measures preempting local development ordinances that directly harm our ability to plan for future growth and continue to serve as the economic engines of Texas.

The only other area city represented in the letter is Amarillo. The mayors of Lubbock and Amarillo announced more than a week ago a plan to form a coalition of West Texas Mayors with the intended purpose of having more influence with the legislature.

Mayors of Lubbock, Amarillo, Arlington, Austin, Corpus Christi, Dallas, Denton, El Paso, Fort Worth, Frisco, Galveston, Houston, Irving, McKinney, Plano, San Marcos, and Sugar Land all signed the letter that was sent out with a letter-head of Texas Cities Work.

You can read the full letter from the 18 mayors below.

Mayors-Letter-to-Governor-July-2017

Dear Governor Abbott:

Texas cities are among the fastest growing in the country and play a critical role in the Texas economy. We believe that several of the proposals announced as part of the call for the 85th Special Legislative Session will directly impede the ability of Texas cities to provide vital services that reflect the priorities of local residents. We would like the opportunity to meet with you to discuss the role cities play in attracting jobs and investments to support the prosperity of the State of Texas.

Recent reports project that the largest cities in our state will increase in population by at least 50 percent over the next 25 years. People are moving to Texas cities because we are home to strong job markets and places where they want to live and raise their families. To prepare for this rapid growth, we must continue to have the tools to manage our budgets, improve infrastructure, provide critical services like public safety and pass policies reflective of local resident priorities. Harmful proposals such as revenue and spending caps, limiting annexation authority and other measures preempting local development ordinances that directly harm our ability to plan for future growth and continue to serve as the economic engines of Texas.

As Mayors, we are dedicated to delivering quality services to our residents and attracting new businesses to move Texas forward. We respectfully ask to schedule a meeting with you as soon as possible to discuss your specific concerns with Texas cities and how we can work together to ensure a productive partnership for Texas.