For Houston City Council At-Large Position 3, incumbent Michael Kubosh faces three challengers: Janaeya Carmouche, Jose Carlos Gonzalez and Marcel McClinton.
Community Impact Newspaper invited candidates to provide the responses below to help voters weigh their options. All candidates are listed below in the order they will appear on the ballot. Responses may have been edited for length.
Marcel McClinton did not respond by the Community Impact Newspaper deadline.
Jose Carlos Gonzalez
Occupation/experience: I am a consultant in resource allocation for homeland security. I am the founder and director of the Texas Homeland Security Institute.
Occupation/experience: I have been in office for over 5 years. I have managed two child care facilities as a Child Care Administrator for 5 years. “All Our Dreams Youth Home” and “The Gulf Coast Youth Ranch”. I have been a little league coach, a boy scout troop leader, a member of the Frontiersman camping Fraternity. I have worked with all of the communities in Houston and attend Civic Club, Super neighborhood and home owner association meetings.
Occupation/experience: I have worked to advance Houston communities since she was a child. My 15+ year professional career includes leadership in matters of public policy, issue advocacy, public/private partnerships, crisis response and large-scale program development. The hard-fought lessons learned from my experiences uniquely qualify me to serve the interests of all Houstonians, and to hit the ground running day-one.
What issues do you want to be a lead advocate on?
Gonzalez: I want to be a lead bringing the community together. I want to lead bringing our community’s voice to City Council. I want to advocate for the issues that our community cares about.
Kubosh: Public Safety (reduce crime and all violence including ‘gun’ violence, Flood Mitigation (use the State’s Rainy Day Fund to build the 3rd reservoir and to mitigate neighborhood flooding, Transportation (encouraging citizen engagement in solving this problem is paramount. We need the citizens involvement, not just those that drive cars.)
Carmouche: Better Government. We need systems level change that is based on data and stakeholder input. Our workgroups have begun working on a livable municipal wage, early ed expansion and human trafficking.
Empowered Communities. My office will establish the Community Leaders Forum to help Houstonians solve problems but also teach them the inside track through resources, events, and educational opportunities.
Strong Small Business. Government contracts should be accessible to every small business.
Rain-Event Mitigation & Resiliency. I will work to ensure the equitable dispensation of flood bond dollars within the city of Houston. I will work with the Houston Housing Department to support smart community design with infrastructure.
What role will you play in improving Houston’s budgeting and fiscal planning?
Gonzalez: I will play a leadership role improving budgeting, fiscal planning and resource allocation.
Kubosh: Council has approved ‘zero-based budgeting’ for the second time in 2 years. The Mayor Promised to follow the ‘zero based budget’. We know over the past 10 years the revenue of the city of Houston has increased 3.6%. Yet we continue to spend more than we are bringing in. We have not passed a STRUCTURALLY BALANCED BUDGET since I have served on City Council.
Carmouche: I intend to actively participate in budget assessment, design and restructuring processes to identify systems-level improvements and opportunities to operate, and deliver city services in a sound quality and cost-effective manner.
What is your take on improving mobility in the city?
Gonzalez: We can do better in improving mobility in the City. I want to increase the return on investments in mobility infrastructure. I want to make mobility more sustainable and resilient. I want to work on ways in which we can encourage and Increase METRO ridership. I want to expand walk/bike trails.
Kubosh: Improving mobility is about all types of transportation. Buses, Rail, Cabs, Uber, Lyft, TNC’s, and Automobiles. The mayor has talked about a PARADIGM SWITCH when it comes to Mobility. There has been not town hall meetings or committee meetings to address this PARADIGM SWITCH. We need the citizens involvement on the needs of all of the community and not just those that drive cars.
Carmouche: The City’s role in transportation is primarily infrastructure. I believe the City should further invest in creating pedestrian-safe on our roads in pursuit of Vision Zero, an international movement that acknowledges that all roadway deaths are preventable with improved street design, education, and enforcement. Additionally, bringing stakeholders (i.e. Harris Co., H-GAC, developer organizations, advocacy organizations) to partner in smart design throughout the city that will accommodate and support safe, efficient and environmentally friendly multi-modal transportation options as the City grows and certain areas become denser.