What Is P.O.W.C All About?
POWC (formerly, Property Owners Who Care) South Padre Island, top ten answers to question about how and why YOU SHOULD BECOME A MEMBER.
1: Why was POWC-SPI (formerly Property Owners Who Care South Padre Island) formed? POWC was formed simply because it is needed to protect the quality of life on the Island, for all... full time residents, part-time occupants, tenants, business owners, visitors, etc. Contrary to the original name, you do not need to own property on SPI to join POWC.
2: Why is POWC needed? Due to the significant growth of the City of South Padre Island over the last 10-15 years, issues confronting the City Council and other elected officials are complex and difficult. Decisions made by these entities impact the quality of life for everyone associated with the Island. Further, there are many stakeholders who are affected by these decisions not all of whom are registered voters of the City of South Padre Island. This is why we invite all concerned with maintaining the integrity of the island to join in the efforts of POWC-SPI.
3: Is creating an organization like POWC an unusual approach in our society to addressing issues of mutual interest or concern? No. The entire society of the United States of America has been built upon the concept of participatory democracy. Today, property owners, tenants, visitors, etc. do not have a vehicle by which to participate in the very proper debate which accompanies any issue of public concern. POWC seeks to be an advocacy organization through which concerned citizens can have their opinions heard.
4: If this is not an unusual approach in our society, is it still not an unusual approach for issues relating to the City of South Padre Island? No. Again, American society is characterized by people coming together because of common interests and/or common concerns. With respect to South Padre Island, there are many examples of this having happened in the past. Two examples (one old and one new) are the following:
In the 1970s, Ila Loetscher, a resident of South Padre Island, became interested in the preservation of the Ridley turtle. She caused other people to become interested in this cause. She became known as The Turtle Lady of South Padre Island and because of her interest in this subject and the following that she attracted she developed not only a regional, but a national reputation of respect.
The most recent example occurred when a number of individuals came together to support maintaining open access for the public to Isla Blanca Park. This group interacted very effectively with a number of officials and was highly successful. Thus, the concept of multiple people coming together from different backgrounds to unite in support of a common cause, or to promote a shared objective, is very much a part of the fabric and history of South Padre Island.
5: Is POWC a permanent entity? Yes. POWC South Padre Island is a legal entity incorporated under the laws of the State of Texas. It is a not-for-profit corporation 501-c-4 (The bylaws of POWC can be reviewed on our web site, www.powc-spi-org)
6: Will POWC become a political entity? No. The primary purpose of POWC is to educate and inform its Individual and Business Members on matters related to the areas of interest to our members.
7: What is the governance structure of POWC? POWC has a 7-member Board of Directors. It is the objective of POWC to have a very diverse Board of Directors. At least 4 of the directors must vote in the City of South Padre Island and others must own property in the City of South Padre Island but vote in other communities. POWC will also have officers consisting of president, vice-president, a secretary, and a treasurer. The officers will hire employees, as needed, to oversee the day-to-day operations of POWC.
8: Do you have to be a property owner to join POWC? No. Anyone who cares about South Padre Island can join. The Mission of POWC-SPI is to preserve, protect, and expand the quality of life on South Padre Island. Our purpose is information, advocacy and leadership on behalf of the members of POWC. We want our members to be the best-informed voters on the island. We want POWC to be an effective advocate for POWCs goals for the island. We want POWC to both develop and support high-quality leadership for the City of South Padre Island, the Laguna Madre Water District and the Point Isabel Independent School District.
9: What is the dues structure for POWC? Individual Household Membership (which includes up to 2 representatives per household) has dues assessed annually at $50 per year. Businesses Members will pay annual dues of $250.
10: Is it true that a Political Action Committee (PAC) was formed which has as one of its areas of focus matters that affect the Town of South Padre Island. The name of this PAC was the Rio Grande Valley Committee for Good Government and its web site is www.rgvgoodgov.org. Even though the interest of the PAC (i.e., Rio Grande Valley Committee for Good Government) and Property Owners Who Care South Padre Island are similar, there is no formal or legal relationship between these two separate and distinct entities.
11: How does one apply for membership in POWC? To become an Individual or Business Member fill out our online membership application at www.powc-spi.org.
Lady Bird Johnson said, It takes not only the dreamers, the believers, the legislators, it will also take the keepers the watchful stewards [to protect a] national belonging such as Padre Island [it is] the miracle that man can tear apart but not reassemble.