It appears the Place 8 for Stephenville City Council will go to incumbent Jerry Warren after challenger and fellow council member Boyd Waggoner released the following letter.
TO THE EDITOR
I have decided to withdraw from the May City Council election.
If my name remains on the ballot, please do not vote for me.
I have been unable to persuade the council to avoid what in my
judgment are some significant irrational decisions such as below.
One was hiring an employee in 2015 (about $100,000 annually),who was
recommended to council without adequate background check. I then
googled her, and found out about her termination by her last three
employers (2009, 2011 and 2013). I advised the
council of these problems, but was unable to persuade them not tohire
her. She was hired, then fired in less than 6 months for “creating a
hostile environment”, a known problem from her past.
And just this week, in a 6-3 vote, the council decided to give away
tax dollars to “entice” a company to open a business here AFTER that
company had filed a “lease and purchase option” with thecounty
(without an opt out clause), for a restaurant. This tax advantage was
not only unnecessary (because of the pre-existing
written contract), but also violated Stephenville’s written
“Stephenville Economic Development Incentives Program”, rule B(6)(f)
(last revised 2010) which prohibits incentives that give “…unfair
competitive advantage to one business over another local business.”
As to economic development, that was the main reason I ran in 2014.
After the election, I read the Attorney General’s handbook on the
subject, traveled to the Metroplex, persuaded the best lawyer in
the field to come educate the council, then brought in the successful
Executive Director of another city’s program, who spoke to council,
then placed the question on the council agenda, resulting in a
successful city vote in 2015. The subject is not foreign to me.
However, in my judgment, the council is now abusing the basic
philosophy of Economic Development. It not only voted to ignore the
city’s written “unfair competitive advantage” ordinance, but gave away
tax dollars in unnecessary incentives, in the name of “…being open
for business”, to a business with wait staff as primary
employees, getting paid around $3 per hour plus tips and no benefits.
That’s enough for now.
Unfortunately, I see no reason to believe the May 2016 elections will
I am not going anywhere, but I am shifting some priorities around, so
maybe I can help outside of elective office.
Stephenville City Council