Q&A: Meet the candidates for Cedar Park City Council Place 1

Early voting begins April 19 for the May 1 election. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)
Early voting begins April 19 for the May 1 election. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)

Early voting begins April 19 for the May 1 election. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)



CEDAR PARK



Cedar Park City Council, Place 1










Jim Penniman-Morin



Occupation: Attorney


Experience: A father of six, volunteer, West Point grad, combat leader and lawyer skilled at finding common ground and unifying people






Why are you the best candidate for this seat?



JPM: I will bring fresh ideas to the council, not a return to the same arguments and embarrassing headlines of the last several years. My experience leading soldiers and negotiating major deals for businesses will guide me to be an effective member of the council who listens to and respects everyone. I will remain focused on the important issues before the city and not be distracted by matters unrelated to Cedar Park.



How will you help Cedar Park recover from the effects of COVID-19 and the Texas winter storms?



JPM: By working to further improve the things that kept us sane and led people to continue moving to Cedar Park throughout the last challenging year: great professional opportunities, green spaces and quality of life for kids, parents and grandparents. Through projects like Bell Boulevard, Lakeline Park and the Whitestone Quarry redevelopment, we must continue to attract vibrant social spots and new businesses by developing public spaces that make this a home we couldn’t imagine leaving.



How will you ensure the city grows in a healthy way?



JPM: With Williamson County’s population projected to soon double, we will have to accommodate thousands more people on the same roads. Cedar Park needs to plan for that challenge by encouraging innovative solutions and making smart investments before we find ourselves in the same stifling traffic that many of us thought we’d left behind in other cities. With a diversified tax base and sound fiscal management, we can do all that while still lowering tax rates.









Dorian Chavez



Occupation: Regional Account Executive, Sales, Pharmaceutical Cleanroom Supply


Experience: Budget and personnel manager experience at organizations like: U.S. Army, fortune 500 companies and smaller companies. Prior Cedar Park councilman.






Why are you the best candidate for this seat?



DC: I’ve kept my campaign promises. I was the only councilman, with the support of only one other councilman, that advocated for and supported the lowest tax rate increase possible for our citizens. Although I lost the battle to earn our citizens the lowest tax rate, I was able to convince the rest of the council to meet me halfway. I advocated for hiring the 1 police officer requested and we got it.



How will you help Cedar Park recover from the effects of COVID-19 and the Texas winter storms?



DC: To start, all of our citizens and all our businesses are essential. I will ensure we move quickly to support businesses and citizens in attaining state and federal funding for Covid relief. I would start an initiative to shop and eat locally. Due to the recent winter storms, I would target and fix problem areas with our city water and roads by incorporating new emergency plans to deal with future extreme weather conditions.



How will you ensure the city grows in a healthy way?



DC: I would like to focus on bringing larger-scale businesses and employers to our city. This will help diversify the tax base to ease the burden on homeowners and reduce our dependency on property taxes. Completing road projects and moving quickly on additional improvements to help better our traffic flow is very important. I will work with city engineers and council to prioritize existing and new projects.


By Taylor Girtman
After interning with Community Impact Newspaper in 2019, Taylor Girtman became a reporter for the Cedar Park and Leander edition in February 2020.


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