El Paso’s City Council approved the agenda item to pay over a million dollars to form a Climate Action Plan during their meeting on Wednesday.
The Climate Action Plan would commit the City of El Paso to signing a four-year contract with AECOM Technical Services Inc., paying them $1,239,235 to draft the plan.
This plan plays into the passing of 3 propositions by voters for a more renewable and sustainable city.
Of those three propositions, Proposition C mandates the issuance of $5,200,000 General Obligation Bonds towards renewable energy and resource use efficiency improvements and planning.
You remember Proposition C. It barely passed with 50.63 % of the vote back on November 8, 2022.
City of El Paso, Texas Proposition C
“Shall the City Council of the City of El Paso, Texas, be authorized to issue general obligation bonds of the City in the principal amount of $5,200,000 for permanent public improvements and public purposes, to wit: designing, constructing, improving, renovating, expanding, enhancing, and equipping City facilities for renewable energy and resource use efficiency improvements and planning, including photovoltaic and solar panel installations, urban heat, mobility and climate action planning, and modernization to existing City facilities to meet green building standards and in connection with the foregoing, acquiring land, easements, rights-of-way, and other real property interests necessary therefor; such bonds to mature serially or otherwise over a period not to exceed forty (40) years from their date, to be issued and sold in one or more series at any price or prices and to bear interest any rate or rates, (fixed, floating, variable or otherwise) as shall be determined within the discretion of the City Council at the time of issuance of sale of the bonds; and whether ad valorem taxes shall be levied upon all taxable property in the City sufficient to pay the annual interest and provide a sinking fund to the bonds at maturity and the cost of any credit agreements executed in connection with the bonds?”
That’s a pretty comprehensive list of the things that the Prop C bond money was/is to be spent on.
Somehow a Climate Action Plan didn’t make the list.
Yet the City of El Paso is plowing ahead with what they think is good for us, whether we like it or not.
I’m not sure that a Climate Action Plan is a bad thing, but no one who voted for Prop C voted for a Climate Action Plan.
If the City thinks that we need a Climate Action Plan, maybe they should find the funds for it someplace besides the Prop C bond money which was deliberately, specifically, allocated for those things enumerated in the bond ordinance, as cited above.
Too bad we spend all that money on water parks, and the ongoing maintenance of the ballpark, and a trolley that doesn’t really go anywhere anyone wants to go. Maybe then we might have the money for things that really mean something, like a Climate Action Plan.