Length of residency in San Marcos: 23 years
Experience: currently serve on City Council and deputy mayor pro tem, current chair of the Capital Area Rural Transportation System board, board member of the Lone Star Rail District, serve as an executive committee board member of Community Action of Central Texas, board member of the San Marcos Convention and Visitors Bureau, served on the citizen advisory steering committee of the comprehensive master plan, served as chair of land use and development on the San Marcos Watershed Initiative
Why are you running?
On council, I listen to our community and reflect their views and concerns. Our biggest challenge is managing growth. I will protect neighborhoods and our river from inappropriate development and keep San Marcos a safe place where families can live, work, and not be negatively impacted by irresponsible growth, traffic, and ever-increasing tax bills. I will continue to work towards these goals, present and future, through our collective community vision and comprehensive master plan.
What do you believe is the greatest challenge facing the city?
Our greatest challenge is managing growth while protecting neighborhoods, our watershed and river, and respecting land owner rights as well as home owners' rights. Growth should pay for itself, so we need to consider the full costs of development—on city services, traffic and drainage. We need to work to bring living-wage jobs and affordable housing options to San Marcos so working families can afford to stay here as our economy grows.
Why do you believe you're the most qualified candidate?
I have three years of service on council and multiple local and regional boards. I was proud to serve on the comprehensive plan committee, which shapes our new land development code that we will be adopting this year. I believe the solutions to our challenges lie in our residents; we are an engaged community, rich in creative, innovative ideas. I believe my experience and my insight into our community makes me the most qualified candidate.
What do you believe the city should do to protect neighborhoods while ensuring adequate housing for students?
In the comprehensive plan, we identified growth corridors along major thoroughfares with connective efficiency to campus that would be ideal for student housing that minimize disruption of neighborhoods and increased traffic demands. We have adopted rental registration ordinance as well as conditional-use permit requirements for student-purposed housing that will control where rent-by-the-room housing can be placed. It will take leadership from elected officials to ensure we grow both markets responsibly.
What do you believe the top priority should be as the city begins administering the $25 million disaster recovery grant from 2015's two floods? (i.e. housing, infrastructure, assistance to affected businesses, etc)
I believe long-term solutions should be our first priority. We can use this money as leverage for additional funding sources to begin drainage projects that will protect our most vulnerable neighborhoods from future flooding. Residual funding should then be made available to homeowners to address unmet financial needs. My top priority will be identifying and implementing drainage projects that will allow residents to remain safely in their homes for generations to come.
Place 1 challenger Rene Compean did not respond to Community Impact Newspaper's Q&A by press time.