Ways & Means – Yes or NoIn response to an earlier Letter to the Editor, for someone to call a Ways & Means Committee “silly”, and to say we tried it before in Trophy Club and failed are just not correct. At one time we had a very effective Ways & Means Committee which provided excellent oversight to our Town Council on subjects like unusual expenses, variances against budget, and mistakes - which sometimes occur.The wording on Proposition 19 could be clearer but I read it to say that this committee must attend all scheduled Ways & Means Committee meetings – not all Council meetings. Today, no Town committee is required to attend all Council meetings – so why would this committee be any different?Another comment about this committee costing the Town $90,000 has no basis whatsoever as committee members in Trophy Club are volunteers and not paid staff.It is interesting that the main opposition to Proposition 19, a vote for or against a Ways & Means Committee, is being spear-headed by several Council members, one of which is up for reelection, and are strongly supported by the Town Manager. These are the people responsible for over seeing the expenditure of your current tax dollars. Why are they opposed to having additional sets of “hopefully qualified eyes” assisting them?A Ways & Means Committee is not and never should be an adversary. It should be an ally in place to assist the Mayor, Town Manager and Council to be better equipped with answers when questions arise – as many always do. Jim Thomas, Trophy ClubIn responseAs a candidate for Keller City Council, I must apologize for my opponent who has confused high density with higher density. On Aug. 13, 2012, my opponent spoke at the Keller P&Z and on Sept. 4, 2012 at the City Council meeting, in favor of higher density than what is currently allowed in the comprehensive future land use plan and our City’s long standing zoning. Please view the videos and draw your own conclusions about who's being honest about this development issue. This election isn’t about a single issue - but most importantly, voters need to consider the future of their neighborhoods and what higher density development will do to the life style they have chosen in Keller.Higher residential densities create unplanned problems that impact our tax base, not just our City, but County and School District taxes as well. The Future Land Use Plan predicted 45,000 to 50,000 residents in Keller at build out, but every time the Plan and zoning is changed to allow higher density, that forecast is invalid. Knowing that our City and School District have used this planned population to develop long range infrastructure and facilities plans, that planning will not work if the density increases. Every Keller tax payer should be considering the impact of increased density. When you double or triple the number of houses planned for an area, the increase has reverberating effects on the entire community.I would greatly appreciate your vote on May 11. Debbie Bryan, KellerIn responseResponse to Council Member Bill Rose's misrepresentations about the Proposed Charter Amendment for a Ways and Means Committee.Here are the facts:(1) Over 430 residents signed the petition, 20-25 residents collected signatures, the ballot was drafted by 5 residents.(2) The Committee met with the Town Manager and made several changes based on some of his concerns.(3) The final draft was sent to the Council, Town Attorney and Manager, no objections were made, the Town Manager in an e-mail stated that the Amendment looked good.(4) Bill Rose voted to approve the ballot Amendment without any comments.(5) After the Council voted to place it on the ballot we asked the Town Secretary if there were any further issues, we would gladly meet with the Town Attorney and/or Manager.(6) As to Mr Rose's incorrect comparison with the MUD Director's fees to the W&M Members, no Council member or Volunteer can be compensated as per the Town Charter.(8) The prior Ways and Means Committee did not fail, it was disbanded by the Council in 2008. Up until 2008 our Tax rate was flat around .43 cents per $100 property valuation, after the Committee was disbanded the Tax rate went up nearly 10 cents in the next 4 years in which Council Member Glen Strother, my opponent, was on the Council.The Ways and Means Committee is about oversight and Accountability.I encourage you to vote “yes” on Proposition #19. Greg Lamont, Trophy ClubCandiate respondsI entered the campaign for Keller City Council, Place 1, believing citizens would consider the facts about the candidates and cast their votes. What I didn’t count on was my positions on the issues being misrepresented and distorted by my opponent and her supporters.In recent Letters to the Editor of this newspaper and at a recent candidate forum, my position about development was repeatedly misstated. It has been said I support “high density” development in North Keller because of my support for the Bridgewood neighborhood. Nothing could be further from the truth.First, the city’s zoning map clearly indicates Bridgewood is a medium density development. My opponent stating otherwise is nothing but a scare tactic trying to incorrectly convince voters the city is cramming high density rooftops onto small lots. It’s just not true. Second, I do not support high density development in North Keller. I never have, and it’s time for the misrepresentation to stop.It’s clear development in North Keller is an important issue, but I don’t believe it’s the only one we need to be concerned with. An effective council member must consider all of the issues facing the entire community and be prepared to offer comprehensive solutions. My campaign, which is based on my desire to help Keller continue to be the community of choice in Northeast Tarrant County, does exactly that. I invite you to visit my website, BobHillforKeller.com, to learn the truth about my candidacy, and I’m asking for your vote on May 11. Bob Hill, Keller Candidate for Keller City Council, Place 1
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