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Consumer group presents city charter amendment petition
Tuesday, 16 November 2004

Frisco Enterprise

Dr. David Becka is on a mission to hold homebuilders accountable, and he's willing to fight City Hall to do it.

By Mike Raye, Staff Writer

Monday, he and members of a Frisco-based consumer advocacy group presented a petition signed by 9,300 like-minded neighbors to Frisco City Secretary Nan Parker, hoping to get two group-penned city charter amendments on a ballot next year.
TakeBackYourRights.com

Frisco Enterprise

Dr. David Becka is on a mission to hold homebuilders accountable, and he's willing to fight City Hall to do it.
Monday, he and members of a Frisco-based consumer advocacy group presented a petition signed by 9,300 like-minded neighbors to Frisco City Secretary Nan Parker, hoping to get two group-penned city charter amendments on a ballot next year.

The proposed amendments would require homebuilders to fully disclose "pitfalls" that lie in new home contracts, especially in the area of "alternative resolution" or "binding arbitration" that can protect construction companies against shoddy work claims from homebuyers, Becka said. Another amendment would require Frisco homebuilders to post a $2 million surety bond with the city to serve as an ersatz insurance policy for homebuyers to correct substandard and below-code construction, as well as defective appliances and materials.

The group, "Take Back Your Rights Political Action Committee," has lobbied Frisco residents for months, appearing at events such as Frisco Freedom Fest and visiting neighborhoods during National Night Out in a patriotically emblazoned car, passing out leaflets and American flag decals. A media packet handed out Monday included flag decals tucked between sheets of background information. The City Hall event was covered by representatives of local electronic and print media.

"I would like to thank all of the citizens of Frisco that signed these petitions and the thousands who support our efforts," Becka said through a prepared statement. "We needed approximately 2,050 signatures, and (by the number we got), Frisco citizens in overwhelming numbers want these two important issues brought to a vote."

According to the Frisco City Charter, a proposal of amendment must be signed by five percent of registered voters. What was unclear, however, and a question being researched by the city attorney, is whether that means five percent of voters as counted at Monday's submission of the petition, or at the Nov. 2 election, the last election before the submission.

According to the group, 4,600 signatures were obtained on each proposal. The city will take the next 30 days to validate the signatures, and if a sufficient number remains, the measures could be placed on a city ballot early next year.

Becka's campaign began over what he described as faulty construction on a home built by Huntington Homes in the Starwood subdivision, which led to arbitration between Becka and the builder. Becka claimed that leaky plumbing led to the growth of black mold in the home, making it uninhabitable. The Beckas sought a settlement with Huntington Homes, but the parties, records show, did not agree upon the appraised value. The family sought damages and the "fair market" value for their home. The case was scheduled for arbitration.

Becka's campaign for homebuyers could be used in a campaign for Frisco mayor. According to Parker, Becka has filed paperwork with the city listing a campaign treasurer. The city begins taking candidate applications in February, with a mid-March deadline. Becka has made no public statement of his intent to run.

 
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