Port A resort battles beach access road
Two months ago, KRIS 6 News first reported Cinnamon Shore — a popular and growing beach community in Port Aransas — encouraging its owners to vote in May’s municipal elections.
But, the secretary of state’s office and the Texas attorney general said the request may have violated state law.
AG is investigating the Cinnamon Shore team for sending an email asking at least one person per house in the complex to register to vote in Port Aransas and vote for candidates who oppose a new beach access road just south of Cinnamon Shore.
The problem? Almost all Cinnamon Shore owners don’t live there full-time.
In October, several Cinnamon Shore landowners spoke out against the road construction project at a Port Aransas City Council meeting, pointing to increased traffic, falling property values, and land tenure issues. security.
“Please, please don’t put this in my garden,” resident Natasha Davis asked the council.
But the city says the road is all about safety and getting emergency vehicles to the beach faster.
They say 40% of all EMS calls come from south of mile marker 30, which is the direction of Cinnamon Shore.
“This is about saving lives and getting our EMS team to the people who need it faster and faster,” said Port Aransas resident Roger Powers.
In November, the general manager of the multimillion-dollar luxury home community came before the council to offer another solution.
He offered to allow EMS to access the walkway used by Cinnamon Shore to access the beach.
“We are working with them to obtain this letter of certification to ensure that in the future EMS can use our dune crossings to access the beach and provide the necessary easements,” said Daniel Mazoch, Cinnamon’s general manager. Shore.
City Council is moving forward with plans for the proposed access road.
In February, Cinnamon Shore sent an email to owners asking them to register for the next election and vote for candidates who support “Cinnamon Shore’s responsible development plans.”
The letter lists the access road as one of the main issues.
“And for someone to think that they own a business or have a short-term rental as a business, that gives them the right to change our election, that’s just not fair,” said Jo Ellyn Krueger, Port Aransas City Council member for Place 3.
It could also be illegal, according to the secretary of state.
Nueces County tax records show that only two of Cinnamon Shore’s 526 owners have a homestead exemption, meaning it’s their primary residence.
In a letter to the AG, Secretary of State investigator John Scott said the Cinnamon Shore email warranted an investigation because the state’s election code prohibits anyone from trying to bring people to vote under false pretences.
“That’s just plain wrong. We should have fair elections, if you live here you vote here, if you don’t you don’t,” Krueger said.
KRIS 6 News requested an interview with Cinnamon Shores, but they declined our request to speak on camera.
In March, they said their intention was to encourage farm residents to vote.
The AG’s office opened its investigation ten days after KRIS 6 News first reported the story.