2012 Election Coverage — Woodlands Township - Board Of Directors Candidates

Gordy Bunch

Q: Why did you decide to run for election on the Township board?

A: I want to propose township board term limits because we need fresh leadership. I will represent the interests of residents to balance the board's passive directors who represent self-serving interests. Also, the decision to transform from a township to incorporated city requires questioning of assumptions made in researching options.

Q: What are some of the issues facing The Woodlands that you feel need to be addressed by the Township board?

A: We need to forge a governance system that is economical, equitable, and scrutinized before presenting for voter approval. We must manage growth and ensure infrastructure is in place for anticipated expansion. Refocus township programs and direct visitor dollars to benefit residents and family activities over visitor events. and advertising.

Q: How should The Woodlands work to continue its high standards, service and way of life?

A: Residents are more than 100,000 strong, owning more than 30,000 homes, as well as numerous businesses here. The developer, commercial builders, township board and staff must understand this is our hometown and be held accountable to preserve the spirit of this community.

Claude Hunter (Incumbent)

Q: Why did you decide to run for election on the Township board?

A: My work of leading this community to its destiny of forming our own government is not yet complete. There is more to do in improving safety and lowering taxes. Preparing the voters for an informed decision as to our future needs experienced leadership over the next two years.

Q: What are some of the issues facing The Woodlands that you feel need to be addressed by the Township board?

A: Public safety and mobility issues in and around The Woodlands are important. I will strive to maintain George Mitchell's vision which brought all of us here. Lastly, preparing voters to make an informed decision on our future permanent local government is especially important over the next two years.

Q: How should The Woodlands work to continue its high standards, service and way of life?

A: By focusing on public safety and maintaining Mitchell's vision at the lowest possible tax cost. We should continue to lower taxes by improving manpower and energy efficiency. Enhancing sales and hotel occupancy taxes and attracting quality employers and businesses brings commercial taxes which help reduce residential property taxes.

Henrietta Riddiford

Q: Why did you decide to run for election on the Township board?

A: I have been encouraged to step forward by neighbors and family. My involvement in the columbarium issue made me aware of other issues. Road noise, utility line plans, the Villa Sports slide and road construction are examples of issues impacting our community without any notification of residents.

Q: What are some of the issues facing The Woodlands that you feel need to be addressed by the Township board?

A: The Woodlands is faced with many issues, but pressing issues to be addressed by the Township board are the involvement of our citizens, transparency of governance, and possible incorporation.

Q: How should The Woodlands work to continue its high standards, service and way of life?

A: Our residents are the heart of our community, and it is imperative their interests and concerns be heard. To continue our high standards, I would work to increase citizen involvement in our governance and strive for conservative use of our fiscal resources.

Mike Bass

Q: Why did you decide to run for election on the Township board?

A: This is an opportunity for me to use my business, financial and government experience to help preserve all the things that have drawn us to live in The Woodlands and that keep us here. And, do so at a reasonable cost.

Q: What are some of the issues facing The Woodlands that you feel need to be addressed by the Township board?

A: Preserving our quality of life

- Maintaining a safe environment

- Keeping property taxes as low as possible

- Provide leadership regarding the incorporation decision

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Q: How should The Woodlands work to continue its high standards, service and way of life?

A: We need to stay true to the vision that drew us all The Woodlands, hire quality people and compensate them fairly, have good, realistic plans in place, be conservative in our spending and the use of debt and always seek ways to reduce property taxes.

Ted Stanley

Q: Why did you decide to run for election on the Township board?

A: This is a critical time for the residents. I feel I can add value and experience to the board and help us transition as we move forward. I am capable of seeing all sides of an issue and making a decision based on the best interest of all.

Q: What are some of the issues facing The Woodlands that you feel need to be addressed by the Township board?

A: Always, public safety is the forefront of our concerns. Other important issues include tax rates and spending; maintaining quality of life; preparing for a final governance structure; and preparing for the final "close out" phase of residential growth in The Woodlands.

Q: How should The Woodlands work to continue its high standards, service and way of life?

A: We continue high standards by continuing to engage the volunteers; we provide service levels by hiring the best people on the staff side; and we continue our way of life by maintaining Mr. Mitchell's initial vision (which has also become ours) as we move forward.

Roland Borey

Q: Why did you decide to run for election on the Township board?

A: My neighbors asked me to run and I believe my experience can be of service to our community.

Q: What are some of the issues facing The Woodlands that you feel need to be addressed by the Township board?

A: With The Woodlands nearing the limits of its development, the Board has an increasing responsibility for oversight of the Township, monitoring impacts and mediating conflicts. Especially important will be the Board's interactions on the option of incorporating as a city so that residents can make an informed decision on this issue.

Q: How should The Woodlands work to continue its high standards, service and way of life?

A: With regard to maintaining high standards, services and quality of life in the Township, as a director I would do so by representing the interests of residents to the best of my ability, and by striving to assure that the Board maintains a hometown vision and is fiscally responsible with taxpayer funds.

Tim Nutt

Q: Why did you decide to run for election on the Township board?

A: The Woodlands is a beautiful, thriving community, and I want to help maintain and grow the original vision for The Woodlands. I would also like to see residential tax relief as a result of the increase in revenue from hotel/sales tax collection.

Q: What are some of the issues facing The Woodlands that you feel need to be addressed by the Township board?

A: The Township will be faced with these pressing issues: incorporation, residential tax relief, and a financially responsible solution to the water taxis. I have been listening to residents and these are the issues that they are most concerned about.

Q: How should The Woodlands work to continue its high standards, service and way of life?

A: The previous governing bodies have done nothing less than follow the master plan laid out for our community and have done an excellent job. We have continued to set realistic goals, planned for both residential and economic growth, and hired the best professionals to perform duties in our community.

Margarita Chavez

Q: Why did you decide to run for election on the Township board?

A: I decided to run for the Township Board of Directors because I believe the board needs Hispanic representation.

Q: What are some of the issues facing The Woodlands that you feel need to be addressed by the Township board?

A: The board has done a fine job in facing the various issues. The incorporatiion issue is the hardest yet. It is my understanding that incorporating would raise property taxes which I believe are very high already.

Q: How should The Woodlands work to continue its high standards, service and way of life?

A: The Woodlands should proceed cautiously to represent its increasingly diverse population in a fair manner, thereby insuring a high standard in service and secure way of life.

Jay Mac Sanders

Q: Why did you decide to run for election on the Township board?

A: I believe we need new leadership in our community. I want to make sure we have conservative fiscal management for years to come. We need new ideas for this generation and the next. I believe I have the right experience, moral compass,and work ethic to represent the hard working residents.

Q: What are some of the issues facing The Woodlands that you feel need to be addressed by the Township board?

A: Keeping the tax rate low and establishing appropriate capital reserve levels for the future. Future expanded growth of economic development needs to be balanced with responsible resident-based needs and input.

Q: How should The Woodlands work to continue its high standards, service and way of life?

A: Keep doing what they are doing. The Woodlands has done a good job of having high standards, service and way of life, so keep doing what we're doing.

Jeff Long

Q: Why did you decide to run for election on the Township board?

A: We're at a critical juncture of having the ability to decide whether to become a city. The board needs someone who has gone through this entire governance process and transition—I was on the transition team to create the township—who has that experience as well as 30 years of experience with city governments.

Q: What are some of the issues facing The Woodlands that you feel need to be addressed by the Township board?

A: Continuation of ensuring that we provide excellent services that comply with keeping the hometown vision alive but on top of that, ensuring that tax rates are kept to the lowest possible rates to ensure that all of us can continue to live here and participate in the wonderful community.

Q: How should The Woodlands work to continue its high standards, service and way of life?

A: By ensuring that we are using every tool that's available to keep costs down, and encouraging frugalness. It's working smarter and being able to cut costs where possible. Ensuring again that we keep a community that everyone wants to live in and it's at the highest standards possible.

John Randall Risher, II

Q: Why did you decide to run for election on the Township board?

A: I want to be part of shaping a Board that is diligent and wise in the spending of the hard earned tax dollars given to it by the residents, and who never forgets that its first allegiance is to the voters.

Q: What are some of the issues facing The Woodlands that you feel need to be addressed by the Township board?

A: Assure that consideration is being given to tax dollars being spent and to not ask taxpayers to pay more than they should. Focus on issues that impact residents: safety, quality of life and maintenance of property values. Add my executive business experience to the decision-making process regarding governance options

Q: How should The Woodlands work to continue its high standards, service and way of life?

A: We have to protect against following other municipalities who have attempted to do too much without regard to the cost of their actions. We have the opportunity to learn from the mistakes of those who have gone before us and to deliver on the promises made when we came together to form The Woodlands Township.

Ed Robb (Incumbent)

Q: Why did you decide to run for election on the Township board?

A: For 10 years I served as a director for Town Center Improvement District. I led the TCID board when the agreement was brokered to set The Woodlands free from the threat of annexation by Houston. I've served the community as Director of South Montgomery County YMCA, the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, and chairman of Interfaith.

Q: What are some of the issues facing The Woodlands that you feel need to be addressed by the Township board?

A: Future governance. Drought management and reforestation. Keeping our taxes low. Maintaining the high level of neighborhood services. Continued pro-active support of public safety—both fire and police. These are the priorities I offer.

Q: How should The Woodlands work to continue its high standards, service and way of life?

A: In two years as treasurer, the Township board has implemented forward-looking reserve policies to allow replacement of community infrastructure without spikes in the tax rate. We must strengthen our commercial tax base. About half of our total revenues come from sales and room tax. And a major portion of sales and room tax is paid by visitors.

The Woodlands Township Board of Directors Election Information

Voter Eligibility — Voters must be registered to vote for The Woodlands election. Polling locations and additional information are available by visiting the "Elections" section of The Woodlands Township website atwww.thewoodlandstownship-tx.gov.

Montgomery County Polling Locations:

Precincts 15, 31, 56, 59, 69, 70, 75 — Windsor Hills Homeowners Association Club House, One Windsor Hills Circle, The Woodlands

Precincts 33, 48, 49, 58, 62 — South County Community Building, 2235 Lake Robbins Drive, The Woodlands

Precincts 3, 6, 71, 78, 81 — Galatas Elementary School, 9001 Cochran's Crossing Drive, The Woodlands

Precincts 4, 32, 45, 61, 67, 79, 84 — Wilkerson Intermediate School, 12312 Sawmill Road, The Woodlands

Harris County Polling Locations (only for residents of the Village of Creekside Park) — The Woodlands Fire Department, Station 7, 26722 Kuykendahl Road, The Woodlands

Early Voting: April 30–May 5 8 a.m.–5 p.m.

Election Day Voting: May 12 7 a.m.–7 p.m.

By Shawn Arrajj
Shawn Arrajj serves as the editor of the Cy-Fair edition of Community Impact Newspaper where he covers the Cy-Fair and Jersey Village communities. He mainly writes about development, transportation and issues in Harris County.


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