1. What do you believe is the biggest challenge facing Stephenville?
I could start with the challenges of monetary concerns with aging infrastructure; how our city has struggled regarding streets, deteriorating water, and sewer lines. I could discuss long-term budgeting and imperative financial projects. I could address inflationary factors creeping into almost every facet of our expenditures or challenges in keeping our municipal services high. Let's not forget the importance of economic growth. The challenges are many.
However, none compare with the fundamental challenge that reverts back to the voter. I hope we all recognize the gravity of what is before us; that, we, as a community are educated on the issues and committed to the tasks at hand. For it is up to the voters, with the foremost challenge of electing officials best suited for this journey. Our future depends on it.
2. Do you support an events center/multi-purpose facility? Why or why not?
An event center has been a topic of discussion for many years and would make a nice amenity for Stephenville. However, an event center is neither a priority nor an essential function of government.
The city has far more important issues related to existing and/or basic services. There are two main obstacles. As recently proposed, the overall cost would be tens of millions of dollars.
This is problematic for obvious reasons. The other being facilities of this nature tend to "bleed" money from an operational standpoint.
Many argue an event center is needed and a few significant interest groups have joined in its promotion. However, when I go out into the community, the vast majority of citizens have little appreciation for this type of facility. Because it is my nature to be cautious with taxpayer funds, I cannot support an event center that could burden the populous.
I would, however, agree to a bond election/referendum to allow the voters to decide.
3. What are your thoughts on the East Side Sewer Project?
As I am discovering most citizens are not informed, and in some cases unaware, of the said $16,000,000 project. It is vital we correct this. There exists elements of the Eastside sewer that have merit. Phase I is more of a corrective nature and is designed to increase capacity.
Phases II and III are primarily focused on future development related to the airport and North Highway 281. None of which, addresses the need for replacing existing aged pipe currently within the confines of the city.
Phase I is more essential and feel a "yes" vote is justified. Phases II and III are of worth, but warrant more consideration before I could commit. I think it more sensible for the city to have incorporated replacement of aged sewer lines into this project. Let's take care of the existing before any expansion. Also, I would like to explore cost saving measures in hopes of making the Eastside Sewer more affordable.
The project itself hinges on an application for financial aid and agree certain facets are welcomed.
4. How long have you lived in Stephenville and what clubs/organizations are you a part of?
I have lived in the immediate area for forty-five years and at the same residence for twenty-seven.
Our home was annexed into the city in 2007. The experiences, thereof, have conditioned me to be more compassionate of those being annexed. Civic organizations are vital to the community, and I support various through their fund-raising efforts.
Council consumes most of my time outside of work and family. I currently serve as chairperson of the Annexation Committee for the City of Stephenville. I participate in four standing committees related to city government. I have coached with SPARD multiple years and served on various church committees including finance. I belong to the Texas Motor Transportation Association and previously served on its Leadership Council.
I spent several years on the Board of Directors of the Carrizo HOA in the capacity of both President and Treasurer. I only resigned from the HOA when it became evident I was going to run for my first term for city council. I belong to and qualify for various heritage organizations.
5. Why should voters choose you instead of your opponent?
The race for place 5 between myself and my opponent is the clearest decision of all the races, because of our opposing mindsets. My opponent derives from government and I derive from private business ownership. Our differences are best illustrated in a recent article by The Flash, ‘Ballot Full for May 6....’, where Walt Wood advocates tax rate increases, appreciation for debt, lack of possibility to run government like a business, and contends he wants to be a voice for the 155 city employees he considers family.
I feel conservatism is essential in a time where practicality and common sense are being challenged in the name of change. I represent the citizens, for which government exists, and favor no one select group over another. I have voted in a manner to lower your taxes, eliminate waste, restrain debt, and operate more business-like regarding cost savings. I do believe government can change for the betterment of its citizenry.
Never will I stand before this community and say, "I know what is best for you". Stephenville is deserving of a government indicative of its needs. I feel confident my pro-citizen record equates to accurate representation. I appreciate your support...Keep the Faith.