City & State Leaders Discuss Controversial Issues 4/13/12
CBS 7 Reporter
April 13, 2012
Odessa, TX - City leaders from across West Texas join forces and share ideas tonight, looking for solutions to the hot button issues plaguing each town.
"All of these communities have similar problems, whether it's water or trash," explains Congressman Mike Conaway.
Tonight they looked outside of their own cities to find the answers at the Texas Municipal League meeting in Odessa. In addition to networking, it's a time for the different communities to talk about the controversial topics they are facing in their city.
Leaders from Marfa to Odessa and even Washington D.C. are under one roof to discuss issues like texting while driving, as City officials say they are seeing more drivers hitting the road distracted with their cell phones.
"It's good to know what cities are enforcing it and who isn't," says City of Pecos Mayor Venetta Seals.
Another hot button issues is water. As the drought continues, the water supply is going down; forcing cities to enforce tighten water usage restrictions.
"Water will be one that's not solvable easily," explains Representative Conaway.
Another item on the agenda is a ban on plastic bags. The bags are becoming an unpopular site across West Texas landscape, prompting some cities to look into banning the bags.
"We have not completed the 2nd reading on our plastic bad ban but we are seriously looking at it," Mayor Seals says.
Even miles apart these cities say the topics hit close to home.
"We’re all facing these issues so it's good to see their view points on how they're handling things," Mayor Seals claims.
It's a time to find out what works, what doesn’t and how they can work together to help each other out.
"You don't necessarily have to reinvent the wheel. Not everybody has the best idea but you want to do the best idea 1st," Representative Conaway claims.
Each leader hopes to leave with fresh ideas and a new perspective when it comes to making decisions for the people they represent.
While there was no action taken on any of the agenda items, several of the local city council members say hopefully, this will help them come up with a plan for their individual city.