Friendswood Debates English as Official Language

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Friendswood officials and residents are debating a proposed amendment to the city charter that would make English the city's official language.

Council member Chris Peden has proposed putting the measure to city voters on a May 12th ballot.

Four City Council members said yesterday they support the amendment and would approve putting it to voters. The two remaining members said they're opposed.

The measure would formalize the practice of conducting city meetings and printing city publications in English.

Peden says the proposal is not intended to limit people's access to government, but would specify that services would be provided in English first.

Council member Laura Ewing says the change would set a bad tone for the city. Hispanic leaders were also skeptical about the proposal, saying it would encourage discrimination.