Prop 1 battle continues in federal court - | KTBC Fox 7 | News, Weather, Sports

Prop 1 battle continues in federal court

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For months, voters heard about a health district tax hike that would be on the November ballot.

Supporters say it would help build a medical school at UT. Opponents say it will affect those on a fixed income.

Either way, Travis County residents voted in favor of it. Now opponents, represented by Stephen Casey - filed a lawsuit.

"You have to tell people what the bond is for the health district was created for one reason and one reason only and that was to provide services for the poor and so they can't go and build a medical school just because it's health related, I mean I can say anything is related to healthcare," said Casey.

Weeks before the election, Don Zimmerman with Travis County Taxpayers Union took the lead in the fight against the tax hike.

He says the language on the ballot was more like a sales pitch. And they weren't able to include their side on the ballot.

"What they didn't tell them is how unaffordable this is going to be, they didn't tell them how this is the highest tax county, they didn't inform the voters how many people are going to be driven out of their homes because of this tax increase," said Zimmerman.

In court on Wednesday, our cameras weren't allowed inside but Casey brought up another angle to the federal court judge.

He says that the ballot was not only biased but intimidating to minority voters who have a low reading comprehension level.

"I think that's really condescending and pretty offensive," said James Cousar, the attorney for the defendants.

He denied the ballot was worded to violate voting laws by making it intimidating to minority voters. He also denied that the ballot was slanted.

"The part of the ballot they're challenging is very factual in nature it just provided information to the voters that if you approve this ballot measure this is how central health will spend the money," said Cousar.

The ultimate decision will be up to the federal court judge. He's expected to make a ruling before 5 p.m. Thursday.

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