SAN ANTONIO -

After its marathon meeting Wednesday night, several city council members said the group should delay the vote on changes to its nondiscrimination ordinance.

The vote, scheduled for Sept. 5, would add gender identity, sexual orientation and veteran status to the list of protected classes under the city’s nondiscrimination ordinance.

Wednesday was the first time the council publicly discussed the most recent changes to the ordinance, and several council members said the group is not ready to vote yet.

“I'm just still seriously deliberating and looking at the language of the ordinance and taking into consideration the feedback we  got from citizens last night,” District 2 Councilwoman Ivy Taylor said. “We just got the new language last night and I don’t think there’s sufficient time necessarily to get it out to the public for additional review.”

District 1 Councilman Diego Bernal said the group has had enough time to deliberate.

“Can we tweak a few things, sure,” he said. “We can make a few changes, but we’re ready to go.”

More than 400 people spoke during the “citizens to be heard” portion of the council meeting Wednesday.

The large turnout has some council members suggesting letting the public decide on changing the ordinance.

“Anytime that we have something that has this much citizen input and is this controversial first we need to take our time to make sure we do it right, and then ultimately we need to decide is this ultimately something the voters need to decide,” Soules said.

But supporters of the ordinance said it’s the council’s duty to make tough decisions.

“The leadership of the city has been elected to make a decision and I think that's what we need to do going forward,” District 8 councilman Ron Nirenberg said.

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