Just when you might have thought that city council would get a respite from the ballpark and Lincoln Center controversies two items on today’s city council agenda could bring everything to a boil. Lily Limon has added the two items to today’s agenda. The good thing is that the agenda seems devoid of any other controversies and is short as well.
In the Regular Agenda, item 9.1 states; “Discussion and action regarding a request that the City Manager prepare a plan to finance the restoration of the Lincoln Center for use as a Community Center”. As you are aware, last week’s council meeting resulted in the city dropping the lawsuit against TXDOT and asking TXDOT whether they are interested in negotiating in “good faith” for saving Lincoln Center.
Although the mayor and one state representative, Jose Rodriguez, asked that council put some language about the city’s willingness to fund revitalizing the center at the end of all of the political pontifications what was finally voted on gave the power back to TXDOT and the city extended its proverbial hand out asking “pretty please”, help us.
You already know why I think they did this from my blog post last week.
What Limon’s item is now asking is that city council show TXDOT that the city is serious about saving the Lincoln Center. It is letting them know that funds have been allocated. It will be interesting to see how Emma Acosta and Larry Romero will try to justify their votes on this one.
As for Ann Morgan Lilly, Cortney Niland and Michiel Noe their pontifications notwithstanding, all three have been given their marching orders.
I expect a lot of preaching from Acosta and Niland as both are aspiring to other elected offices. In the end, Cortney Niland has her mind made up and no reasoning will change that, as it will go against the wishes of those she serves. Acosta, on the other hand, is more malleable because she is looking for support in her future political adventures.
Under the Additions to the Agenda, Lily Limon has also added item 1.1; “Discussion and action to review the policies to the use of the baseball luxury box, with discussion to include list of past attendees and schedule of departments using the luxury box.”
Obviously, this is a warning to city council dissenters that do not want to fund the restoration of Lincoln Center that the ballpark is still very much controversial for the community. How painful this item would be for Emma Acosta, Cortney Niland and Larry Romero could possibly be as a result of how each of them votes to fund the restoration of the center.
Remember it’s about sound bites that make it into the news cycle. Having an empty luxury box, or attendees connected to demolishing city hall would further rouse the community’s dissatisfaction with the process of the ballpark. This would also pointedly remind people about the double standard of how certain community members are given preferential treatment over others.
It is a good political strategy by Limon to connect the two issues together. It puts Morgan Lilly and Niland’s masters in the uncomfortable position of have to carefully create the messages for their messengers. As emotions rise so does the opportunity to deviate from the script increases. And the resulting sound bites could become painful.