DeSoto Residents Say Yes To City Charter Changes

DeSoto City Hall
DeSoto City Hall

DESOTO—Voters in DeSoto said yes to all six propositions on the ballot Saturday. Unlike neighboring cities, the Special Charter Election was the only change at DeSoto City Hall. The municipal election had been cancelled because all city council candidates were running unopposed. The special election was called in order to consider amendments to the City’s Home Rule Charter.

“The City of DeSoto is a home rule city. The city charter is the document that establishes the City’s government structure and power. The charter was initially drafted by the citizens and approved by the voters,” said Mayor Curtistene McCowan.

Propositions include allowing the City Council to fill a vacancy when less than one year remains on the term. This appointment can be made in the office of Mayor or council member.

Then, an amendment to the City Charter noting that five members of the City Council constitute a quorum for purposes of voting on any matter and four members of the City Council constitute a quorum for purposes of conducting a meeting for discussion when no action is being taken.

Other alterations include that the Charter be amended to conform with provisions of State law and also to eliminate language regarding limits on bond projects as well as eliminating language requiring each Councilmember and the Mayor appoint three members to the Citizens Charter Review Commission. It will still require the Citizens Charter Review Commission to consist of 21 members appointed by the City Council and the final proposition is to correct typographical errors.

The majority of the proposed amendments were required to bring the DeSoto City Charter in accordance with state law.

All the propositions won by a landslide. Proposition 6 won by more votes than the other five at 1,035 for and 40 against. This proposition was simply to amend the DeSoto City Charter in order for typographical errors to be corrected.

Grand Prairie Special Election Passes

The City of Grand Prairie’s special election was a success with 2,006 voters or 70.29% saying yes. Only 84 voters or 29.71% stood against the City Charter provision.

The proposition meant the city can successfully amend the order to remove the 30 year restriction on the term of any grant. This includes franchises, leases or other use of the streets, highways, public thoroughfares and property of the city, its avenues, parks, bridges and all other public places and property.

The vote also means the council can continue to determine the term of any lease or use of city property.