This week council and some staff will attend the 2021 Texas Municipal League Conference. This year the conference is held in Houston. I’ve had people ask me why we go and what we do at the conference. So let’s talk about it. The Texas Municipal League (TML) started from a calling of A.P. Wooldridge, mayor of Austin in 1913. Mayor Wooldridge invited all Texas cities to attend a meeting on Nov. 4, 1913, in Austin. His idea was getting cities together to collaborate, discuss and band together. Thirteen cities showed up for that first meeting, 14 in total including Austin. Unfortunately, Pleasanton was not one of them. Mayor Wooldridge was quoted at that first conference saying, “I know this, that you all need the League as badly as I need it. I am right here at the capitol, and yet I need to touch elbows with my neighbors all over the State, and your lot and condition is no better than mine. These, in very brief words, are the purposes of this meeting.“ Since that meeting in 1913 the membership has grown to 1,168 cities. The benefits to membership are advocacy, legal support, training, resources and experts and free advertising on the TML career center. After that 1913 meeting the league grew rapidly for the next 35 years. Some other key dates are 1958 when the name was changed from the League of Texas Municipalities to the Texas Municipal League. Also that year a new constitution was adopted. In the 1970s they created insurance pools and the TML Worker’s Compensation Joint Insurance Fund was established. There are 10 key points to the TML mission. I’m not going to list all 10 because you can go on the website and read that, but they include anything from reporting on legislative change, to alerting cities of government and private sector actions, to conducting training.
So, if you’re wondering what council and staff does at the conference, here’s a list of a few things. This year we will discuss and have sessions on legislative updates, Texas sales tax, coronavirus and the Local Fiscal Recovery Fund, winter storms and outages, lawenforcement legislation, population growth, cities and firearms, grants, cyber security, legal issues and transparency. Unless it’s changed, staff and counsel usually discuss who’s going to what session. This helps the city attend as many sessions as possible. There are also social times where not only does the council and staff get together outside of meetings and city hall, but also meets with other cities, vendors, etc. I hope this information gives a better understanding of what TML is/does and why the City of Pleasanton is a member.
To change the subject, don’t forget that this is high school homecoming weekend and the Ultimate 80s Throwback at the Park. It will be held this Saturday, Oct. 2, 6 p.m. The event is free to the public and I encourage people to come out and support our school at Friday night’s game and the Ultimate 80s Throwback at the Park. Partial proceeds go to the Larry Brown Scholarship Fund and educational experiences for Pleasanton ISD’s special-needs students.
Because most of these are for information purposes, I know they’re not the most riveting! But I hope the information is received and would welcome any suggestions on future articles. Remember PISD has many sporting events this week; check the PISD website. Hope to see you at the games/events, the football stadium and river park this weekend!
CLINTON POWELL is the Mayor for the City of Pleasanton. You may reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.