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Comment Ending on Auditor’s Read of Geographic Representation

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Wells Dunbar, KUT News

There’s still time to voice an opinion on the city’s switch to geographic representation.

The deadline for public input in City Auditor Kenneth Mory’s interpretation of voter-approved language calling for 10 single-member districts was initially last week. But the auditor has since extended the comment period through tomorrow, Jan. 16. 

When voters approved Prop 3 last year, it amended the city charter to include language calling for geographic representation, and prescribed the process for making the change. (You can learn more about that process here.) But the language left a few things subject to interpretation – so now the office is seeking citizen input to make sure its interpretation matches that of the voters.

“We have had many calls and emails, particularly in the last few days,” Mory tells KUT News. “We’re just wanting to make sure everyone has the chance to participate.”

What are some of the biggest points of contention? Austinites for Geographic Representation, the citizens’ group that got Prop 3 on the ballot, says one of the eligibility requirements for serving on the commission – having voted in three of the last five May elections – should be loosened to include people that voted in the last three of five elections, May and November included. Another grey area is whether party precinct chairs would be eligible to serve. You can read AGR’s comments on the auditor’s interpretation online.

The office will take comments online, over the phone or by mail through 5 p.m. Wednesday.

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