YOUR QUESTIONS ANSWERED!
Below are 13 questions that have been asked of me from various groups that live in our community. I am answering these questions with the greatest of intentions and truth.
Question 1: What are your top three priorities if elected?
We need to start analyzing and using Common Sense when approving new commerce development from our out-of-control growth. Our city has developed at a historic rate and needs to start using common sense and examine the dire condition of our natural resources i.e. Water and Land. We have horrible traffic from our massive population growth, and we need to think before approving any new development proposals. You cannot be afraid to say NO!
We need to protect our water in Landa Park and Comal Springs. We must start educating businesses and the public about water conservation. We are in deep trouble! Our Edwards Aquifer is dangerously low, and it will eventually dry up. We need to find more water sources and protect Landa Park, as-well-as our endangered species wildlife. As our water goes, so does everything.
We must pass the Crime Control & Prevention District (CCPD) for our police officers. They desperately need to hire more officers, need more education and training, and need new technologies and communications infrastructure. They need more crime prevention equipment to help them do their jobs and perform successfully. We need them to come home from work alive and to be with their families and to enjoy life.
Question 2: What options make sense to you for transportation improvements such as public transit in a city growing as fast as New Braunfels and in general within the Austin-San Antonio corridor?
Improvements to public transit are very important, but I do not want to see city buses moving through downtown New Braunfels nor Gruene. Smaller forms of transportation are good i.e. Alamo Regional Transit. The Austin-San Antonio corridor will get exceptional busier after the 1900-acre Mayfair project gets underway. Park-and-Rides do work. In about 3 years’ time, we are going to see a traffic nightmare.
Question 3: What would you do specifically as mayor to involve residents and business owners in decision-making processes?
I will widely advertise any new project proposals for public consumption so that they can either protest or accept these proposals. We must protect and conserve our vulnerable Edwards Aquifer and Comal Springs. We must use common sense and public input when moving forward with ANY new development proposal projects. I will listen to the citizens as they will be the ones in charge. If they do not want it, then we do not build it! You must ask yourself one question. Is this what we need, or is this what we want? As of today, the wants outweigh the needs. This is wreaking havoc on our community. This growth mentality must change.
Question 4: How would you work with state and Congressional leaders to solve local problems for New Braunfels?
Never be afraid to ask for help. Regular communications with our state and congressional leaders are crucial as we are one of the faster growing cities in the United States. Our water situation is dire. Our crime is going up! Our police need our protection and funding! Our teachers need help! Our city needs to rethink its plan for a good future to ever happen.
Question 5: How does your experience and background qualify you for the position?
I was made in Texas. I was born into a mighty military family that truly loves this country. My Grandfathers served in World War II. My father served in the Coast Guard for 36 years. Two of my brothers served in the Air Force. I served in the U.S. Army for 17 years and was medically discharged from my injuries. I have always worked under tremendous pressure within the military directly for the President of the United States, the Vice President, the First Lady, and the United States Secret Service for 6 years. I was an intelligence analyst for the Iraqi and Afghan cells delivering classified information to the Secretary of Defense within the Pentagon for 5 years. I worked for the Department of Homeland Security for 2 years, the DIA for 4 years, and deployed for 5 ½ years to Iraq and Afghanistan in support of the Warfighter. I can make very decisive decisions under tremendous amounts of pressure and deliver successful results. I understand what it takes to get things done.
Question 6: Which responsibility of this office is your highest priority and how do you intend to accomplish it?
I am a conservative leader for common sense growth for our city. I stand on slowing down our fast-paced, out-of-control growth by using common sense to allow what type of developments can go forward. You have to ask yourself, is this what we need or what we want. Today, the wants outweigh the needs. This is very concerning and hurts the city, the citizens, and our natural resources. I am not for the developers nor big business. I am for the citizens of New Braunfels and what they care about and want. We need to find more water resources as we are in huge trouble. Our population is booming at an excessively rapid rate – too much, too fast! Our natural resources are being depleted. The heart of Landa park, its natural artesian springs are drying up. I 100% support our protecters of the streets, our police officers. We must try again and pass the CCPD as our police need new technologies, K-9’s, etc. The CCPD was shot down by the current city government and that is extremely concerning.
Question 7: What other issues do you believe will be most pressing for the office and how would you address them?
We need to hire and train more police officers to prepare and assist the already under-manned current police staff. The problem with drugs and crime is going up and that must be handled with the help of more police presence and determination. Our problems are a direct systemic spill-over from San Marcos, Austin, and San Antonio. The Crime Control Prevention District Must Be Passed! We must support our teachers as they are being ignored by the directors and administration. Teachers need more pay, a work stipend, more sick leave from 10 to 15 days for the entire year; SPED teachers need hazard duty pay, etc. Many teachers have quit this year, principals are quitting, and even the Superintendent prematurely resigned. This was within the same school district of NBISD. Something needs to be done! Between their first and second years, 12.5% of our teachers did not return to their profession and by the 2019-20 school year, 50.2% of that original cohort had left. This is a major problem!
Question 8: What are your top environmental and land development concerns and how do you plan to address them?
We need public education about water conservation taught in our schools, as-well-as big business awareness of our horrible water situation! We must find alternate sources of water to feed the next generations to come. We must take a massive look at our city's growth, coupled with our heat waves and tumultuous drought, and re-drive our direction of growth by planning to move towards a more 'Water-based' common sense approach. Our people, our city is experiencing a great deal of hurt. We need to protect the Edwards Aquifer, the Comal Springs, the Comal River, the Landa Park Lake, and our endangered species that rely on our water resources to live. For if we do not, then we will kill off our lovely animals and dry-up everything in Landa Park.
Question 9: Are you aware that if New Braunfels receives HUD funds that you must develop an equity plan which could mean anything from building low income housing to redistricting the schools to achieve racial equity? If no funds are currently received, will you be in favor of maintaining that distancer from federal funding?
I am not a believer is this term, “Equity”. This idea that has made its way into our minds and government institutions has made our country very divided. We used to believe in judging a person by the content of their character and not by the color of their skin. I believe in “Equality” as this action that gives everyone the opportunity to achieve something and make a name for themselves. “Equity” is an extremely racist idea that chooses people only by the color of their skin. In some instances, the ones that are chosen have not achieved or have shown that they deserve the right to move forward. We must recognize those that study hard throughout life and hunger to achieve success, should not be left out to dry. They must be the ones to gain the rewards. For those that do not achieve and have no interest in doing so, they should not be rewarded everything for doing nothing.
I will make sure that we do not accept any HUD funding if any type of “Equity” language come with it. I am not afraid to say NO. I understand that HUD will bring low-income housing and cause redistricting of our schools to achieve racial equity. This idea that we must group a certain race of people into forced low-income housing and redistricting of schools is a Racist idea and will only injure and disparage families into doing nothing towards success. We must find a better way to help our community besides resorting to and racial separation between the citizen in the name of “Equity”. This is madness and does not work. This idea destroys families, communities, and the county.
Question 10: Prior to signing off on housing and apartment developments, would you support a move to have the developers submit an independent study showing the actual impact the proposed plans would have on the water supply? If said study reflects a significant negative impact to the existing businesses and residences, would you be willing to deny moving forward with the development?
I will strongly reject any new developments moving forward if our educated independent studies show that the actual impact on our dire water supply is and will be negative. We must preserve and conserve our Edwards Aquifer, what’s left of our Comal Springs, our Comal River, our Guadalupe River, our Landa Park Lake, and our Canyon Lake. We must do this for the future of our city for generations to come. For if we do not, then we will lose everything. We will lose our protected endangered species of wildlife, our water supply, and our lifeblood of this city.
Question 11: Homelessness is a constant concern for every community. One of the most successful programs to meet people where they are and help them successfully transition back into society is Haven for Hope in San Antonio.Would you be open to bringing the organizations in NB who serve the homeless together and establish a similar model for NB?
I understand that the city of New Braunfels is opening three large buildings that will house the homeless. I did speak with one of the City Councilmen and stated that there are only about 30 or so without homes and are being sheltered within some hotel rooms. I believe that opening these large homeless shelters is a bad idea and can attract more homeless people from other cities when news gets out that our bed capacity has not been met. These make-shift shelters will only house the less fortunate people and will then be forgotten. This can lead to nefarious activities and possible drug use and crime. Not all our homeless are bad individuals, but you must understand that if you do not incentivize or help them move forward in life, they will resort to other activities that are less favorable.
I can appreciate and understand the mission of the Haven of Hope: “Haven for Hope offers a place of hope and new beginnings by providing, coordinating, and delivering an efficient system of care for people experiencing homelessness. They address the root causes of homelessness by offering programming tailored to the specific needs of the individual. Their approach is person-centered, trauma-informed and recovery-oriented. The goal is to meet individuals where they are and support them as they move toward self-sufficiency.”
They do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, veteran status, age or disability. We do need a program that can help our homeless. We do not need senseless warehouse-like buildings to house our homeless and then forget about them. That action will be a great disservice to the homeless and our city.
Question 12: The excess bills received this past year by NBU customers has left many with a total distrust of the leadership of NBU. Utility companies across the state suffered unexpected spikes in cost due to the unusual winter storm in 2021. Could NBU have handled the way they are recouping the costs better and would you be in favor of an audit to determine if there is a more equitable way to spread the cost out over the years?
I am one of the many that paid a tremendous amount from the Great Texas Freeze during February 2021. This historical winter event was the first Billion-dollar disaster to hit the entire state of Texas. The Texas electric grid operator lost control of the power supply, leaving millions without access to electricity and the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, along with all Texans, demanded accountability for the disaster. Our community had to endure unthinkable hardships due to this extremely cold snowy storm, which included very high-water bills, fuel charges, and electricity charges. NBU did an outstandingly poor job of spreading out the cost of the bills charged to the customers, leaving a great impact on everyone. Many citizens were struggling to pay the bills as their utilities were being shut off.
NBU should have seen the terrible impact of any outlandishly high utility bills. Was there no protocol for this natural disaster? NBU did nothing to diminish the burden of crushing bills to the customers. The total amount of charges billed to the customer should have been divided up into several months, if not even years. Our citizens were grossly neglected and abused by NBU and they deserved so much more. The disaster of the Giant Texas Storm was detrimental enough and to add an outrageous unpayable bill was unfathomable.
I am in favor of an audit to determine if there was a more equitable way to spread the cost out over the years.
Question 13: Many cities are requiring employees to undergo diversity, inclusion and equity training. They also are requiring hiring practices based upon DEI more than on candidate qualifications.What is your position on this and what would you do to insure the most qualified candidates are employed regardless of ethnicity, gender, or sexual orientation?
I am not going to give-in to the idea that our city must require employees to undergo diversity, inclusion and equity training. DEI will never outweigh any candidate that has the experience and qualifications to perform a job. When you base your hiring standards on the weakest link and racist actions to justify equity, you only diminish the potential of the profession or business. The work output will be lacking, and our communities will continue to divide between classes and races. I would require that all businesses within the City of New Braunfels hire the most qualified candidates regardless of ethnicity, gender, or sexual orientation.
I was in the United States Army for 17 years and deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan for 5 ½ years. We did not think of equity at any moment. We always achieved and succeeded from hard work, training, and the will to learn; to succeed and achieve. Our mighty military men and women are very qualified by their commitment to learn, adapt, and to survive. They were the most qualified to perform based on their achieved rank within their job and skills and that was understood by all. Equity would never achieve any results that are close to what I have experienced. Equity has no place in the military, including the civilian world.