The year 2013 will go down as yet another historic moment in time for a community that has made an indelible footprint in El Paso’s history. What started as San Elizario’s “David and Goliath” fight against annexation by a once-corrupt Socorro City Government will end with the community winning its independence and preserving the rich history and identity which dates back 400 years.
On Monday, August 26, San Elizario Incorporation Efforts Group will submit official documents at Commissioners Court requesting County Judge, Veronica Escobar to order an incorporation election for the next uniform election on November 5, 2013.
SEIEG is seeking to create a Type A municipality consisting of approximately 12,000 inhabitants within 7.88 square miles. Texas Local Government Code requires SEIEG to submit an incorporation application petition with 50 signatures of registered voters residing in the proposed city limits, a description of proposed boundaries and since part of the proposed city falls within the City of Socorro’s extraterritorial jurisdiction (ETJ), written permission by the City of Socorro allowing San Elizario to incorporate within their ETJ.
Once official documents have been submitted and an election has been called, it is then up to the registered voters in the proposed city limits to decide whether or not to incorporate. SEIEG and others concerned in the community are working hard to make sure voters understand the significance of this decision. “One of the misconceptions is that since the annexation by Socorro failed, we’re no longer at risk,” stated SEIEG member Ben Sanchez. “This could not be further from the truth. There’s a very real possibility candidates can be voted into office this November in neighboring cities who will want to pursue annexation again and we could be facing the same threat before the year is out.”
The effort to incorporate began in February 2013 in response to Socorro’s annexation attempt when it became clear the only way to protect San Elizario from being annexed was to incorporate the community.