Brad Messer Commentary
8:15 a.m. Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2002

Just as local leaders were on the verge of ramming through the vaunted PGA Village, a petition drive forced a public vote. 77,419 signatures were gathered.

To keep the public out of it, the city made a big show of abandoning the PGA Village plan. Plan B was cooked up, supposedly so different from Plan A that the petitions wouldn't apply.

In mid-September, the San Antonio City Council approved Plan B. It still had houses, condos, resort hotels, two PGA golf courses— and a few hundred tons of tax money for the developers. But no taxing district.

I believed then, and now, that this was merely a case of putting lipstick and eyeshadow on a pig and saying it's a different pig.

Plan B had to be different, to keep you voters out. If it was just the original plan in lipstick, legally there would have to be a vote.

City Council tossed a Hail Mary pass over the would-be voters into the developers' end zone. But there was a flag on the play. The organizations that gathered the signatures, filed suit against the city, for pulling the switcheroo.

Very soon, a judge will announce whether there should have been a public vote. If PGA Village Plan B truly is different, no vote. If the judge decides the “new” plan isn't new, we'll be in another big confusing mess.

I still believe the voters were mugged out of their earned right to cast ballots on the proposed deal. We'll find out what the judge believes very soon.

Brad Messer— commentary, KTSA.

Followup: 8:37 a.m.
No public vote on PGA Village
Federal judge ruled this morning that the lawsuit to stop PGA Village and allow a public vote, is without merit. Details on AM550 KTSA News.