Houston Runoff Voter Guide 2019: City Council At-Large Position 1 candidates Mike Knox and Raj Salhorta

Raj Salhorta and Mike Knox
Raj Salhorta (left) challenges incumbent Mike Knox in the runoff for Houston City Council At-Large Position 1.

Raj Salhorta (left) challenges incumbent Mike Knox in the runoff for Houston City Council At-Large Position 1.

Raj Salhorta is running against incumbent Mike Knox for At-Large Position 1 on Houston City Council. Community Impact Newspaper invited candidates to provide the responses below to help voters weigh their options. Responses may have been edited for length.

Early voting takes place Nov. 27 and Dec. 2-10. Election day is Dec. 14.

Mike Knox (incumbent)

Occupation/experience: Former HPD, author and consultant on street gangs and violent youth

Website: www.mikeknox.org


What issues do you want to be a lead advocate on?

Creating a sustainable, fiscally sound budget.

What role will you play in improving Houston's budgeting and fiscal planning?


I will continue to press for zero based budgeting practices and more transparent processes regarding city contracts.

What is your take on improving mobility in the city?

I am open to alternative forms of mobility, but believe we can work with METRO to improve the ride-ability of the bus systems in the short term.

Raj Salhorta


Occupation/experience: I am a lawyer by training. I spent time at Baker Botts before taking a deferral to run for Houston City Council. Before law school, I was a teacher and ran an educational mentorship non-profit called Students With Ambition Go (SWAG) To College. I have experience interning for both Councilmember Steve Costello and Mayor Turner's Office of Economic Development.

Website: www.rajforhouston.com

What issues do you want to be a lead advocate on?

I want to be a lead advocate on drainage and flood mitigation, quality of life (public transit, walkability) and economic opportunity (affordable housing, homelessness, after-school and summer programs).

What role will you play in improving Houston's budgeting and fiscal planning?

I will: (1) review the budget line-by-line to identify opportunities to save money; (2) examine partnerships between the City and County that can save money; (3) study other cities to determine examples of cost-savings.


What is your take on improving mobility in the city?

35% of Houstonians identify traffic as the number one issue facing Houston and Houstonians annually spend an average of 73 hours sitting in traffic. We need to pass METRO Next which will expand light rail to Hobby airport, BRT to Bush airport, community connector buses for the first/last mile, and increase local and express buses. Moreover, we should improve walkability and bikeability by embracing Vision Zero.
By Emma Whalen

Emma is Community Impact Newspaper's Houston City Hall reporter. Previously, she covered health care and public education in Austin.


MOST RECENT

Texas Children’s Hospital
Texas Children’s Hospital provides stipend to employees during COVID-19

Both full-time and part-time employees will receive a check on April 10.

Live music acts such as Houston-based band The Tontons have been wiped off venue schedules amid the coronavirus outbreak. Local musicians are now eligible to apply for monetary support from the newly formed Houston Music Foundation. (Courtesy Mark C. Austin)
Newly formed Houston Music Foundation offers relief to out-of-work musicians

The fund hopes to start cutting checks as early as this week.

A temporary medical shelter is being constructed outside NRG Stadium to help house patients if area hospitals run out of capacity while treating COVID-19 cases. (Courtesy Visit Houston)
ROUNDUP: South Houston coronavirus coverage continues

Here are some notable updates from South Houston on the outbreak of coronavirus that readers may have missed.

With the transition to home-based, digital learning, Houston ISD is preparing to make adjustments to how overall grades will be assigned. (Courtesy Fotolia)
Houston ISD expected to finalize new grading policy in coming days

Under Texas Education Agency guidance, districts do not necessarily have to assign letter grades for courses.

Houston fiscal year 2020-21 budget workshops run from April 7 through May 20. (Courtesy Fotolia)
Houston city budget workshops kick off amid economic turmoil

Houston city department heads are presenting budget proposals to City Council members throughout April and May.

Sheldon State Park, along with other state parks across Texas, will temporarily close at 5 p.m. April 7. (Courtesy Texas Parks and Wildlife Department)
State parks, historic sites in the Greater Houston area close under Gov. Greg Abbott's order

Gov. Greg Abbott announced via a news release April 7 that state parks and historic sites should be temporarily closed to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.

Abbott's order closes all state parks and historical sites effective 5 p.m. April 7. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Gov. Abbott closes state parks, historical sites due to coronavirus concerns

Abbott said the closure is to help prevent large gatherings and strengthen social distancing.

VIDEO: Texas Tribune interview with Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar about the coronavirus's effects on the state economy

At 8 a.m. April 7, The Texas Tribune will host a live interview with Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar, conducted by Texas Tribune Executive Editor Ross Ramsey.

Total coronavirus cases in the Greater Houston area continue to rise. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Coronavirus case count: Houston confirms 402 new cases, citing backlog

Total coronavirus cases in the Greater Houston area continue to rise.

The "Stay Home-Work Safe" order in Harris County also prohibits residents from playing on public playgrounds and using public basketball courts. (Shawn Arrajj/Community Impact Newspaper)
REPORT: Stay-at-home order has saved an estimated 4,500 lives in Harris County so far

New data from the Rice University Kinder Instutite of Urban Research suggests social distancing efforts have been effective.

A car enters an empty parking lot at Rice Village on March 27. With social distancing measures in effect, small businesses have taken a hit. (Matt Dulin/Community Impact Newspaper)
April 6: 5 coronavirus stories South Houston readers should know

Here are five stories from our last week of coronavirus coverage in South Houston.

NRG Stadium
Construction underway for coronavirus medical shelter at NRG Stadium

Just weeks after the Houston Rodeo was canceled due to fears of coronavirus community spread, NRG Stadium is undergoing a transformation to serve as an ancillary medical site for patients.