Issues

    Fight for Wages

    Families need to make more money.  And, keep more of what they earn.  Job creation is all about understanding that there is no such thing as a bad job.  For far too long, the City has focused on jobs with wages in excess of $75,000 that end up being given to people relocating.  We give companies big incentives and tax breaks to bring these jobs to San Antonio.  But, San Antonio residents, the people living here now, have few opportunities because we aren’t focusing on who needs the work the most.

    In 2018, San Antonio had the worst job creation in the last 10 years.  This is unacceptable.

      1.

      We will put Job Creation and Wages at the top of our To-Do List.  If we can give incentives to billion dollar companies, then we can give them to the small and medium sized local businesses to spur job creation and higher wages.

      2.

      We must offer tax breaks and incentives to small businesses.  If a small business is willing to raise wages and offer better benefits, then we need to consider reducing their taxes and waiving City fees for them to expand pay and benefits.

      3.

      The City must support workforce education and expand delegate agency funding where possible to ensure residents who are unemployed or underemployed have the additional skills training necessary to obtain promotions and higher wages.

      Lower Property Taxes and Fees

      A family needs to keep more of their money.  City Hall needs to do more with the money they already have and learn to give some of it back by reducing Property Taxes and fees.  For far too long, City Hall has acted like it’s their money.  Well, as Mayor, I will change that and work hard to help residents keep more of their money.  We will:

        1.

        Lower Property Tax Rates.  With property values skyrocketing and City Hall not lowering our tax rates, residents are paying more. We cannot control what Austin does, but we must reduce the tax rate we assess on property values, both residential and commercial.

        2.

        Focus on restructuring the Bexar County Appraisal District office to ensure fair treatment for property owners.  Residents need a voice at the Appraisal District and they shouldn’t be the focus of countless courtroom battles over valuations.  This means pushing for better, more accurate appraisals and an emphasis on technology to enhance valuation accuracy.

        3.

        Call for a review of all fees assessed by the City.  There are hidden fees everywhere and the City charges its residents additional money above and beyond sales and property taxes for basic city services.  It’s time we review what is being collected and how effective it is to protect residents and their money.

        Public Safety

        San Antonio has the highest crime rate of the top 15 Cities in the nation.  This is unacceptable.  We must keep our neighborhoods safe for our children and families. If we can’t walk out in our communities and feel safe than City Hall isn’t doing their job. Public Safety is the number one job of local government. Here is where I will focus:

          1.

          We must fully fund our police and fire departments. No more games with pay and benefits. We get what we pay for and we must recruit and retain the best police officers and firefighters we can afford.

          2.

          We must reduce crime neighborhood by neighborhood. Each neighborhood has different issues with crime. Some suffer from burglaries, some drugs, others violent crime. We have to work with SAPD and our SAFFE officers who are policing our communities to meet the needs of each neighborhood. We must focus on what matters most and eliminate crime and hold the criminals accountable.

          3.

          We must rebuild the trust between City Hall and its First Responders.  We have seen several years of bad policy coming out of City Hall that resulted in lawsuits and wasted tax dollars.  We must repair the relationships with humility and partnership.  As Mayor, I will end the attacks and divisiveness between City Hall and police officers and firefighters.

          Total Transparency

          Enough of the backroom deals at City Hall.  The public deserves to see and hear everything we are talking about at City Hall.  As we have seen over the last 2 years, too many decisions are happening in secret.  I will:

            1.

            End deliberation of City policy in Executive Session.  No more backroom deals or deliberating.

            2.

            If an item must be confidentiality, we will follow the law and record the meeting in case our ethics are called into question.

             

            3.

            Ensure Open Records Requests are delivered within guidelines and on time.

             

            4.

            Bring City Hall to the people.  We must enhance our citizen participation.  I will push to make sure City Council meetings are held out in the community, so more of our residents can attend and watch City Council do their work.

            5.

            Mandate the online streaming of ALL City Council meetings.  Every meeting must be viewable to the public, across our City.

             

            Streets and Sidewalks

            Basic City services are not being met across our City. We need a back to basics focus on streets and sidewalks. Here is where I will focus:

              1.

              We must catalogue each neighborhood’s needs and that means knowing the status of every street and sidewalk need in our City.  We must put the money where its needed most, but also give Councilmembers the flexibility to take care of their Districts.

              2.

              We must ask the neighborhoods what’s most important to them. Elected officials and City Staff may have their thoughts about what needs to be done, but we must listen to those living in the neighborhoods first and follow their lead.

              3.

              We must utilize every tax dollar to its fullest potential. Streets and sidewalks are a basic City service. It’s a top priority. Our children and families depend on the ability to walk and travel to work and school. Streets and sidewalks must be in good repair, funded, and where needed, fixed and installed.

              Neighborhood Improvements

              Our neighborhoods are the most important aspect of our City. Its where our residents live. Its where they call home for their children and families. All Elected Officials and City Staff must listen to the neighborhoods first. Here is what will be important to our team:

                  1.

                  We will listen to what each neighborhood wants and deliver it. Each community has its own needs. We must listen and never judge what’s most important to each neighborhood.

                  2.

                  We will catalogue the needs of each neighborhood by order of importance to them. Then we go to work at City Hall to deliver those needs, item by item.

                  3.

                  We must help neighborhood associations grow and develop. We should support each neighborhood association and help them build their strength and attendance. An involved neighborhood is a strong neighborhood.

                  Education = Jobs

                  Jobs and Education go hand in hand. As a community and a City one of our top priorities must be creating job opportunities for our citizens and an education and learning mindset in our Districts. To do so, we should:

                    1.

                    Work hand in hand with our school districts to build opportunities for our students. If a school needs a sidewalk, we deliver it. If they need funding or assistance for special programs, we help. If they need safety and security, we partner. Our children deserve our best and we must help our schools educate and grow our future families, leaders, and parents.

                    2.

                    We should target all businesses and corporations, large and small, for growth and expansion in San Antonio More jobs equals more opportunity. Higher wages help families grow and prosper.

                    3.

                    We must partner with entrepreneurs who want to start small businesses in San Antonio. Small businesses are the backbone of our job creation machine.  Education, seed funding and small business coaching are tools the City should fund and support.

                    4.

                    We should also be making it easier for businesses to relocate and offer great jobs. That means selling what’s great about San Antonio and offering a partnership to employers to pay good wages and offer long term job security for our residents.

                    Customer Service First Mentality

                    City Hall belongs to the citizens. City leadership must be responsive and a team of listeners. To do this, the City Hall must:

                        1.

                        Answer all correspondence within 24 hours. If Council offices don’t have an answer, they can still contact the citizen within 24 hours and let them know they are working on their issue.

                        2.

                        Attend all neighborhood meetings, take notes, be professional, and follow up. The Council staff works for the people and they are the bosses.

                        3.

                        Work with a servant’s heart. City Hall should stay humble and work hard for every resident in San Antonio.

                        Caring for Our Seniors

                        We must always remember who raised us, who helped to build our community before us and who will offer us their wisdom and support as we grow. We must always remember our Senior Citizens. As a community, we should:

                          1.

                          Ensure our Seniors have close and immediate access to Senior Centers and all services to help them live an engaged and active lifestyle.

                          2.

                          Build more Centers.  The City has moved to consolidating to Senior “Super” Centers, however, their location can make travel for Seniors difficult. We should examine the Senior Super Centers and who they are leaving out due to transportation issues.

                          3.

                          Ensure Seniors have a voice in policy making and we must convene a Seniors Council to advise the Mayor on key Senior issues.

                          One San Antonio

                          The role of the Mayor is to serve the citizens FIRST.  We are all part of One San Antonio.  And we must work together to create and implement the best policy possible to protect our community. With that in mind, I pledge to:

                            1.

                            Always put San Antonio first.  If I am blessed to be elected, I will always remember who put me in office. I will always think about our City and its residents first and work hard to fight for what’s important to our community.

                            2.

                            Remember we are part of a large, diverse, City. We must work together with fellow Districts to protect our future and pass policy initiatives that promote growth and stability for San Antonio.