SAN ANTONIO — A months-long effort by local activists to reform contract negotiations between San Antonio and its police department – including how much power officers have during investigations into alleged wrongdoing – appeared to come to an end in Saturday's election, where a slightly higher number of voters came out against the measure, known as Proposition B, than in support of it.
50.9% of early voters came out against Prop B in a dramatic development early on, while 49.1% were for it. But with all voting centers reporting, the opposition's frontrunner status only grew; by the end of Saturday night, 51.16% of voters had voted against it, compared to 48.84% voters in support.
With more than 150,000 voters providing their say, that came down to a difference of just 3,475 ballots.
Prop B took center stage over the last few weeks as everyone from local representatives to Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich weighed in. The measure was born out of a petition by the Alamo City group Fix SAPD, which was collecting signatures outside early voting locations ahead of the November election.
By mid-January, the group had officially submitted their petition, cementing a spot on the May ballot.
“It's about having a voice in our contracts and moving to a system where we can still have great pay and great benefits for our officers, but we have a say on police discipline,” a local activist with Fix SAPD said at the time.
Prop B was constructed of 10 specific changes, including eliminating the potential for disciplinary action to be reversed after the fact through arbitration; preventing officers' ability to use holiday/bonus days to receive pay while suspended; and doing away with delayed interviews of officers alleged of wrongdoing while on the job.
Proposition A – which, if passed, would expand how the city uses bond in regards to public works priorities – passed easily, with 58% of voters for the ballot measure and 42% against.