San Antonio voters will see three propositions at the end of their midterm election ballots after various state leaders, local judges, and school district board members – depending on where you live. (Click here to download a sample ballot based on your address.)
Each of the propositions relates to a change to the City Charter, which is similar to a constitution. All would have different impacts to how the local government functions.
While the opposing campaigns ramp up aggressive television and online ads to sway voters to their side, here’s a simplified breakdown of what voters will be choosing in the ballot box:
Most City Council members have joined the Go Vote No campaign to defeat the firefighters union-backed propositions, which they say would have devastating effects on the City’s future. The Approved By Citizens campaign says the measures would strengthen the voters voice, reign in spending on compensation for future city managers and their power, and provide a path forward for the tumultuous contract negotiations between the City and San Antonio Professional Firefighters Association.
Prop C, union officials say, is purely for the benefit of firefighters while props A and B were developed by other community groups that asked the union to help pass.
While props A and B are not directly related to the union on paper, Go Vote No officials say, they would contribute to a weaker City government in which special interests like the union could take advantage of. Meanwhile, the City and fire union have yet to formally begin negotiations for a labor contract. The most recent one expired in 2014 but a 10-year evergreen clause keeps its terms in place until a new one is established. The biggest sticking point in the negotiation stalemate has been health care.
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Early voting starts Oct. 22 and runs through Nov. 2. Hours may vary by polling locations, so when early voting starts, check this site to see which sites are closest to you and when they’ll be open. Polls will be open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Election Day, Nov. 6.