San Marcos City Council candidate Ed Mihalkanin touts previous council experience

Early voting in the November 2016 election began Oct. 24. Election Day is Nov. 8.

Early voting in the November 2016 election began Oct. 24. Election Day is Nov. 8.

edmihalkanin


Length of residency in San Marcos: 26 years


Experience: served on the San Marcos City Council from 1996-2000 and from 2001-06, also served on the Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Economic Council, since 1997 has served as an officer and/or board member of the Lyndon Baines Johnson Museum of San Marcos


Why are you running? 


I am running for City Council because I am concerned about the future of our community. We have had tremendous growth, yet so many citizens have not been helped by that growth. Our neighborhoods, our river and our downtown are under stress. The city government needs to partner with the school district, county, university and private sector to use the wonderful resources we have to improve the lives of our citizens.


What do you believe is the greatest challenge facing the city?


The greatest challenge our community faces is our economic situation. The median income is $26,734, 20% of our households earn less than $10,000 per year and our poverty rate is 36.9 percent (from a survey taken 2006-2010). We need to recognize the multiple barriers to increased income and work to provide better transportation, day care, GED classes and vocational training, and to work with the private sector to increase economic opportunities for our citizens.

Why do you believe you’re the most qualified candidate?

Our fellow citizens will decide who is the best qualified. As a voter, I base my vote on the positions the candidates take on the issues. Second, I consider what experiences, skills, and education the candidates have that would enable them to do the job. Third, and most difficult, is to ask if the candidates will follow through on their positions and act in ways consistent with their campaign if elected.

What do you believe the city should do to protect neighborhoods and have adequate housing for students?


The City Council should refuse to rezone land from single- to multifamily in residential neighborhoods and should encourage the building of apartments on land already zoned for such use. It is the primary responsibility of the university to provide housing for its students. It has not increased campus housing equal to the increased student population, and it needs to do so.


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?


The city government should ensure that residents can move back into their homes safely as soon as possible. In some cases, that would require work on infrastructure to protect the safety of people as they go to and from their homes. Be as efficient as possible in the spending of the disaster relief funds to stretch them as much as possible.