For the last few weeks I keep letting you know that I’m trying to limit my postings on the weekend. Unfortunately the political shenanigans going on at the city keeps me having to post on Saturdays. As you likely know, in last week’s meeting, the city council, [link to details] with the exception of Lily Limon and Carl Robinson, who was not present to vote; council decided to begin the process of changing how items are placed on the agenda.

The proposed process requires a city representative to gather two signatures from two other city representatives to have an item posted on the city agenda. Currently, any city representative can post an item on the agenda. Last Tuesday, city council directed the city attorney to draft an ordinance for approval requiring the additional two signatures. It was understood that the ordinance would be discussed and voted on Tuesday’s meeting.

As you can tell from the commentary on social media, the measure is controversial. The commentary ranges from usurping powers to isolating a specific city representative.

When I reported this measure to you last Wednesday I wrote that I would be commenting on this after city council had actually implemented the measure. Clearly it is wrong and I thought that after some reflection, most on city council would see the folly in it and back down before the actual vote. This, I believed was especially true during the election cycle.

Instead, city council is once again up to its political shenanigans. Instead of voting on this measure on Tuesday, as they normally would vote on such an item, they instead called for a Special Meeting that is scheduled for Monday, March 30, 2105.

There is only one reason to schedule such a controversial item on a Monday. It is to keep anyone wanting to opine on the issue from organizing and preparing to voice their displeasure at the meeting. The news media is oblivious to this as they have yet to report on the scheduled meeting. I believe everyone thinks that this item will be discussed at Tuesday’s meeting and thus plans are being made to let city council know how wrong it is on Tuesday, except, that Tuesday will be too late. By then the measure would have been implemented and it would be too late to stop it.

That is exactly why this item has been scheduled for Monday, March 30 at 9:15am.

As is usual with political subterfuge, there is no backup material.

The item is number 2, on the first of two Special Meetings for Monday. It is ordinance no: 18031.

On Monday morning I’ll offer you my commentary on why this proposal is nothing more than a power grab and the further gentrification of El Paso.

In the meantime, if you care about how Democracy operates in your city you should consider spreading the word about this measure through all means possible. Except for me, who is bringing you this to your attention today, no other news or media center is alerting you to it, which is exactly what the city is banking on.

On Monday, city council is voting to limit access to your government through your elected city representative.

Martin Paredes

Martín Paredes is a Mexican immigrant who built his business on the U.S.-Mexican border. As an immigrant, Martín brings the perspective of someone who sees México as a native through the experience...