San Antonio, Meet Your 2019 Mayoral Candidates

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A large crowd gathers at City Council Chambers for the swearing in of the new council and mayor on June 21, 2017.

Bonnie Arbittier / Rivard Report

A crowd gathers June 21, 2017, for the swearing-in of the new City Council and mayor.

San Antonio voters will see nine names on the ballot for mayor when they cast them during early voting, April 22-30, and on election day, May 4.

The Rivard Report reached out to each candidate for a Q&A that introduces themselves to voters; some you’ve likely heard of, one is a newcomer to the local political scene, and others likely won’t gather more than a single percentage point of votes.

While almost all Council district races feature at least one woman, none of the mayoral candidates is.

Here they are, in order of their filing date, with names linked to relevant websites:

Jump to: Antonio “Tony” Diaz | John Velasquez | Matt Piña | Ron Nirenberg | Carlos Castanuela | Tim Atwood | Bert Cecconi | Greg Brockhouse | Michael “Commander” Idrogo

Antonio “Tony” Diaz

Antonio “Tony” Diaz

What is your current or most recent occupation and/or main source of income? (please indicate if retired)

I am an independent contract driver.

Age? Where were you born? Where did you grow up? In what neighborhood do you currently live?

I am 65, born in Sweetwater, Texas. Grew up here, in San Antonio. I live in the Southeast.

List of previous public offices you’ve sought or held:

Have sought City Council office and mayor, haven’t held any – yet.

What (if any) is your campaign slogan/political motto? 

“Vote for a Working Person”

What past experiences make you qualified to be mayor of San Antonio? 

I have been a human and civil rights activist for decades and have learned much on the social issues that affect people on daily basis.

I organized voter registration drives in Bexar County Jail for people unable to make bail awaiting trial dates with wait times that last for one year. I did this to get the County to recognize that poor people have civil rights and don’t lose any rights until after a conviction verdict. I also register ex-incarcerated people, reminding them that once they are off paper, their voting rights are restored and how vital it is for them to vote to exercise their civil rights.

What problems/issues would you prioritize and how would you work to fix/mitigate them?

There are many issues that I will address as mayor, primarily the continued exclusion of medium- to low-income people’s concerns.

What concrete action can you promise residents you will take within your first 100 days, if elected (if anything)?

One will be to have City Council meetings returned to the previous starting time, which allowed more input from working citizens.

Indicate a recent City Council decision that you disagree with and why:

The Vista Ridge water pipeline, because it placed the burden of development cost squarely onto the shoulders of the ratepayers.

Indicate a recent City Council decision (or two) that you agree with and why: 

I agree with the nondiscrimination ordinance and with the policy that our police force not act as federal agents for Immigration Customs Enforcement.

Please say something nice about a mayoral candidate of your choice:

I supported the firefighter association’s ballot initiatives (propositions A, B, and C) that placed term limits and salary cap on the city managers position along with approving binding arbitration so firefighters have contract negotiations instead of being in court for contract negotiations. Councilman Greg Brockhouse showed courage that I respect for speaking up for the ballot initiatives, sad that all three did not pass because lower income and less organized people continue to go without the ability that the more affluent have.

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John Velasquez

John Velasquez

John Velasquez

What is your current or most recent occupation and/or main source of income? (please indicate if retired)

I am a licensed clinical psychologist for 20 years doing business as Velasquez Enterprises. My clinical specialties are psychological evaluations, psychotherapy, and disability examinations for veterans. My main source of income is as a disability examiner contracted with the VA through my employer, South Central Texas Healthcare to conduct disability examinations for military veterans. I am also currently employed as a contractor for the Presa Community Center and to provide online psychotherapy through Doctor on Demand.

Age? Where were you born? Where did you grow up? In what neighborhood do you currently live?

I am 61 years old, born and raised in Abilene, Texas until age 18. My father’s family migrated to Abilene from Hondo. I moved back to San Antonio in 1999 where I have lived in the same house and neighborhood, East Terrell Hills, in City Council District 2.

List of previous public offices you’ve sought or held:

I previously sought the office of mayor of San Antonio in 2017. I have been active in the Texas Democratic Party as a county and state delegate, most recently as a Bernie Sanders delegate at the state level to the Texas Democratic Party Convention in fall 2016 in San Antonio.

What (if any) is your campaign slogan/political motto? 

“Ask not what your City can do for you, ask what you can do for your City.”

What past experiences make you qualified to be mayor of San Antonio?

Texas has been my family’s home for decades and I am of Mexican-American descent. Bexar County is Democratic. As a Democrat, I would represent the majority of Bexar County people who work and live in San Antonio. I have spoken with thousands of residents from all parts of the city as a psychologist. I am a witness to their “true” life stories. I have interviewed over 1,000 military veterans. Parents, children, homeless, upper middle class, the poor, all ethnicities, and members of the LGBTQ community. I seek office not for myself or for the rich, but the good of all residents.

What problems/issues would you prioritize and how would you work to fix/mitigate them?

The number one problem in San Antonio is lack of access to mental health care. Texas ranks 48th in the amount of dollars provided for mental health care. San Antonio should raise money to fund a city owned mental health system. If there was a mental health clinic within walking distance in your ZIP code, you could mitigate life stressors to manage mental health symptoms. Mental health affects every area of life: physical health, family functioning, academic functioning, workplace productivity, rate of crime, and community economic development.

Climate change is at a crisis moment. San Antonio is the seventh largest city in the USA therefore a major contributor to world pollution. We must reduce carbon emissions now. I have designed an “Active Driver Program” to educate drivers to drive differently. We should educate drivers to navigate their car in unison with other drivers to mitigate congestion. Reducing congestion will improve mental health by reducing road rage and improved on-time to work rates.

What concrete action can you promise residents you will take within your first 100 days, if elected (if anything)?

I will negotiate with TXDOT to create “variable speed lanes” on highways. If the speed limit is 65 mph, only the passing (left) lane can go that speed. Each lane to the right must drive 5 miles per hour less. This will create continuous flow of traffic, reduce traffic congestion now, reduce carbon emissions, and improve mental health and workplace productivity. I have numerous other proposals to improve traffic flow on city streets and highways.

I will begin the discussion to raise the tax rate to fund a city-owned mental health treatment program available to residents 24/7.

Indicate a recent City Council decision that you disagree with and why:

I disagree with how the Council, the mayor, and the city manager handled negotiations with the firefighters union. They mishandled it so badly that the union was able to force an election that threatened the City’s financial standing only to be forced now to negotiate with the union. I am not taking a stand on any specific issues in the negotiations, but for the mayor and Council to put all the blame on the union is not the whole story. The disagreement was overly personalized on both sides.

If the people in charge/in power cannot solve this problem, I wonder how other problems are mismanaged. We are witnessing a form of “hubris” that will hurt us all. The Council needs new leadership with a different way of solving problems and with a new “worldview.”

I also disagree with the mayor putting forth “economic numbers” to demonstrate how well the City is doing. This masks the real suffering of hundreds of thousands of San Antonio residents. The use of old standards of measuring economic success delays and prevents new methods to serve the disenfranchised – it blinds the mayor and Council to go ahead and continue with existing methods and “successes.”

Indicate a recent City Council decision that you agree with and why:

I agree with the decisions to prohibit tobacco use in public places and to raise the age to purchase tobacco products to age 21. Past government decisions to limit tobacco use have been successful in reducing harmful tobacco use for adults and young people. In history, every time the government makes a decision to impact all citizens results in the most beneficial impact.

Please say something nice about a mayoral candidate of your choice:

Mayor Nirenberg’s positive attention to the LGBTQ community has had a positive impact on the mental health of San Antonio residents. Antonio Diaz’s attention to indigenous people has contributed to attention to the original inhabitants of our region and has helped to maintain our cultural heritage.

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Matt Piña

Matt Piña

What is your current or most recent occupation and/or main source of income? (please indicate if retired)

I am employed full time in sales. I went there after completing my master’s because I felt that policymakers were out of touch.

Age? Where were you born? Where did you grow up? In what neighborhood do you currently live?

I am 32, born on a military base. I went to local schools from elementary through my master’s degree. I live near Churchill High School, this is my home and I care about its people.

List of previous public offices you’ve sought or held:

Well, I recently ran for Texas Land Commission. I was also on the transportation advisory board, appointed by Councilman John Courage (D9).

What (if any) is your campaign slogan/political motto?

“Stand together!”

What past experiences make you qualified to be mayor of San Antonio?

Well beyond any degrees or technical training, I have been active in this community for some time. From SAYouth to UTSA’s East Asia Institute I am quite familiar with with the everyday struggles of San Antonio residents. I know what it’s like to be poor, I know what its like to work hard, and I know what it takes to be successful in this city, despite the barriers that are placed on its citizens. I look forward to helping people where I can.

What problems/issues would you prioritize and how would you work to fix/mitigate them?

Public safety, transportation, access to health care, and housing, most of the problems stem from economic hardship. So I am going to do my best to free up barriers for the average person. Using up-to-date methods I will ensure we are able to help each other, make things equal, and provide for our families.

What concrete action can you promise residents you will take within your first 100 days, if elected (if anything)?

Well I will set up meetings in each district to give each resident as much access as they needed to government officials. Too long have our citizens needs gone unheard and unanswered.

Indicate a recent City Council decision that you disagree with and why:

The Alamo Plans and the Paris Accords, both I believe are an attack on the Tejano culture and people of San Antonio. The Alamo plans will see to the destruction of the first integrated building in the South, removal of a free speech zone, desecration of Indian burial grounds, and the disgrace and possible destruction of a Memorial of Texas Heroes. The Paris Accords are designed to give our current City Council a climate friendly face, but ultimately it will be an undue burden to the poorest citizens of our city. There are better options to take in order to protect our environment.  Like zero sum waste management.

Indicate a recent City Council decision that you agree with and why:

Well the city was able to pass an ordinance that required people running for City Council to prove residency. I think this was extremely important as the citizens I run across tell me all the time that they feel that their views and beliefs are not being represented by people from this city.

Please say something nice about a mayoral candidate of your choice:

John Velasquez is by far my favorite candidate other than myself. He is a licensed therapist who does his best to bring awareness to the challenges of mental illness. He is a very kind man.

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Ron Nirenberg

Ron Nirenberg

What is your current or most recent occupation and/or main source of income? (please indicate if retired)

I am currently the mayor of San Antonio.

Age? Where were you born? Where did you grow up? In what neighborhood do you currently live?

I am 41 years old. I was born in Boston and grew up in Austin. I moved to San Antonio to attend Trinity University and then returned here to live for good after graduate school at Penn. I live in the Summerfield neighborhood in District 8.

List of previous public offices you’ve sought or held:

I twice ran for and was elected to San Antonio City Council, District 8.

What (if any) is your campaign slogan/political motto?

“The City You Deserve”

What past experiences make you qualified to be mayor of San Antonio?

I bring years of business and policy experience to the mayor’s office. As mayor, I have fostered unprecedented job creation and economic growth while reversing the rising tide of violence to bring crime rates to a 30 year low.

I bring a governing style and perspective unique among America’s big city mayors. I come from a multicultural, interfaith family, hold a master’s degree from Penn, served as a program director for the Annenberg Public Policy Center, managed Trinity University’s KRTU-FM and founded two small businesses.

My record as councilman and mayor speaks for itself and I stand by it proudly.

What problems/issues would you prioritize and how would you work to fix/mitigate them?

My focus on mayor is on 3 crucial issues – jobs, transportation and public safety. San Antonio is thriving and we are the fastest growing city in America. We are at near full employment and creating jobs as quickly as people can move here. I will continue my policies of fostering economic development (particularly in target industries), developing a 21st century workforce through cooperation with the educational community and the private sector, and ensuring we grow in a way that is beneficial and sustainable.

On transportation, I formed Connect SA, which recently introduced a framework for comprehensive, multimodal transportation solutions to get San Antonians out of gridlock and back on the move. We will continue to seek and incorporate citizen input to improve the plan. Once this framework is finalized, we will ask voters to approve the plan.

We have achieved great success in the war against violent crime. Two years ago, violent crime in San Antonio was at a 25-year high, reminiscent of the days when we were considered the drive-by capital of America. Since I’ve been mayor, we’ve brought our local crime rates to a 30-year low, making San Antonio one of the safest big cities in America. Safe streets and neighborhoods will always be a top priority.

I mentioned San Antonio is the fastest growing city in America. To avoid the crises we see in San Francisco, Seattle and other growing cities, we have to also address critical issues like generational poverty, affordable housing, and reinvestment in underserved communities, so we can foster opportunity for all residents, no matter who or where they are in our city.

I have done all of these things in my first term as mayor and I will continue to work hard every single day to make San Antonio the City You Deserve.

What concrete action can you promise residents you will take within your first 100 days, if elected (if anything)?

As I did in my first days as mayor, I will work with councilmembers to establish specific district priorities and we will begin working on the FY2020 budget right away. This includes continuation of major initiatives, such as the housing plan and the ConnectSA transportation plan. I will also evaluate Council committee assignments and appoint over one hundred citizen volunteers to serve on city boards and commissions. I will work with the Alamo Community Colleges District to implement AlamoPromise, providing education and workforce training opportunities for local graduates – key to new and better-paying jobs for our city.

Indicate a recent City Council decision that you disagree with and why?

As mayor, I am responsible for setting the agenda. While there are some disagreements, I am pleased with the City Council’s decisions on the agenda I have put forward.

Indicate a recent City Council decision that you agree with and why?

Some of the most transformative decisions that the City Council has made over the last two years, and among the ones I am most proud, are the conveyance of property to facilitate the UTSA Downtown master plan, approval of the Mayor’s Housing Policy Task Force framework, and the adoption of two consecutive annual budgets based on equitable investment of services and infrastructure.

Please say something nice about a mayoral candidate of your choice:

I appreciate Councilman Brockhouse’s ambition. We can disagree on politics and policy, but the unapologetic commitment to achieve a personal goal is an admirable one.

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Carlos Castanuela

Carlos Castanuela

Carlos Castanuela

What is your current or most recent occupation and/or main source of income? (please indicate if retired)

I am currently working at the Toyota Motor Manufacturing plant. I have been with the company since October 2009.

Age? Where were you born? Where did you grow up? In what neighborhood do you currently live?

I am 45 years old. I have been living here in San Antonio all my life. I grew up in the West Side of town for 19 years. Then we moved to the South Side of town.

List of previous public offices you’ve sought or held:

I have no past experiences in political offices.

What (if any) is your campaign slogan/political motto?

“Doing the Right Thing for the City”

What past experiences make you qualified to be mayor of San Antonio?

I may not be the most qualified to be mayor of San Antonio, but it doesn’t take a degree or past experiences to figure out what taxpayers want in their city.

What problems/issues would you prioritize and how would you work to fix/mitigate them?

My first orders of business would be in infrastructure, education, SAPD, and housing.

What concrete action can you promise residents you will take within your first 100 days, if elected (if anything)?

I cannot promise anything to my citizens, but we need to fix these city streets that have been neglected for years. The question I have been asking around San Antonio is ‘what is wrong with this city?’ and the top topic is streets. The panhandling is getting out of control in the city. We need to enforce that law.

Indicate a recent City Council decision that you disagree with and why:

(No answer.)

Indicate a recent City Council decision that you agree with and why:

The best City Council decision that they made is the city manager – limiting salary and years of service.

Please say something nice about a mayoral candidate of your choice:

I hope all the candidates have good intentions and hold this great city to a higher standard. I hope we respect each other with dignity.

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Tim Atwood

Tim Atwood

What is your current or most recent occupation and/or main source of income? (please indicate if retired)

Currently, I’m a middle school Spanish teacher. I’ve worked in the education field for the past 17 years, including four years as a substitute teacher, almost three years as an English teacher, and 10 years as a middle/high school Spanish teacher.

Age? Where were you born? Where did you grow up? In what neighborhood do you currently live?

I was born and raised in Wilmington, North Carolina 64 years ago. I live in the Medical District of San Antonio. Educationally, I hold a master’s degree from Indiana University, and another Masters from Huntington University, in Huntington, Indiana.

List of previous public offices you’ve sought or held:

I’ve never sought or held any public office.

What (if any) is your campaign slogan/political motto?

“Tim Atwood, A Common Sense, Conservative Independent.”

What past experiences make you qualified to be mayor of San Antonio?

As a teacher, I’ve learned the importance of preparation, planning, and implementation. These are qualities that are essential for success in any field. A good leader surrounds himself with competent advisors. As mayor, my starting point will be to have many conversations with my colleagues around the dais. Every good conversation begins with being a good listener, so we can learn from each other.

I’m qualified to be mayor, not because of any experience holding political office, but because I possess leadership skills, and I believe I can make a difference through civic engagement. Municipal protocol can be learned, just like any other accumulated skill.

What problems/issues would you prioritize and how would you work to fix/mitigate them?

I call myself the “$900 candidate.” I will not be conducting any fundraising or accepting any monetary contributions. Rather, I will budget $900 of my own money for a low-key, bare-bones campaign. There are two reasons for this approach.

First, it is a political statement against waste and corruption with regard to campaign finance, and against corruption as related to money and politics in general. Secondly, if I don’t accept any money, I don’t owe any favors. This will make me less likely to succumb to any temptation of malfeasance in the future.

This focus of fiscal responsibility and learning to live within one’s means will aid me in addressing the issue of “runaway borrowing and spending” in San Antonio. The city rejoices, and rightfully so, over the AAA bond rating that has been achieved. This essentially means that the city has good credit, and can save thousands, even millions of dollars in interest over the long term.

However, just because you have good credit doesn’t mean that you should be quick to borrow money. If you borrow $5 billion, incentivized by lower interest rates due to a AAA rating, you’re still over $5 billion in debt. I believe that we borrow too much money, and we have too much debt. I would encourage my colleagues, including the city manager, to look for ways to slow down the borrowing and reduce municipal debt, which will benefit everyone in the long run.

What concrete action can you promise residents you will take within your first 100 days, if elected (if anything)?

I would like to somehow be a part of the healing with regard to the present tensions between City Hall and the firefighters union. I sense that there is acrimony among some of the Council members towards other Council members as well, over recent decisions and occurrences vis-a-vis the propositions issue and the appointment of a new city manager, etc. Rather than perpetuating the tension, I will seek to be an instrument of peace. To quote a biblical passage, “A house divided against itself cannot stand.” At the very least, it cannot stand as strong as it should be.

Indicate a recent City Council decision that you disagree with and why:

As I understand it, the City Council recently approved a nearly $4 billion Affordable Housing plan. While I’m in favor of proactively addressing this important issue, I believe that in view of all of the other high dollar projects in the city budget, a 4 billion dollar Affordable Housing plan, is not affordable.

Indicate a recent City Council decision that you agree with and why:

I agree with the recent City Council decision to confirm Erik Walsh as the new city manager. No honest person can deny some of the notable accomplishments of the outgoing city manager, Sheryl Sculley. But sometimes, the need for change becomes apparent, and I think he is the right person for the job.

Please say something nice about a mayoral candidate of your choice:

Mayor Nirenberg has done a fine job in a number of areas. His leadership capabilities have been evident in his service as a Council member and as mayor. Notwithstanding his accomplishments, I’m running for mayor because I believe that the time for change has come.

Bert Cecconi

Bert Cecconi

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Bert Cecconi

What is your current or most recent occupation and/or main source of income? (please indicate if retired)

Col. USAF (DC), Ret.
Business owner, Ret. (Dentistry International, Inc.)

Age? Where were you born? Where did you grow up? In what neighborhood do you currently live?

I was born four score and 3 years ago in Donora, PA, and lived there through high school. I currently reside in Charter Oaks.

List of previous public offices you’ve sought or held:

I’ve run for City Council several times, came close once!

What (if any) is your campaign slogan/political motto?

“Progressive Ideas for a Progressive City”

What past experiences make you qualified to be mayor of San Antonio?
  • Life experience, i.e. married to wife Shirley for 57 years, 3 children, and 5 grandchildren
  • University of Pittsburgh, DDS (1959)
  • University of Michigan MS – Prosthodontics (1968)
  • Private dental practice – 3 years
  • Business owner – 20 years
  • Patent owner – Component Partial Denture Design and Construction
  • Past president, Vance Jackson neighborhoods
  • Member, St. Matthew’s Catholic Church
  • Lifetime member, American Association for Dental Research
  • Well-versed in city politics for over 35 years
  • For 20+ years, rode with Ruben Munguia from his print shop on Buena Vista St. to Mi Tierra for breakfast tacos
What problems/issues would you prioritize and how would you work to fix/mitigate them?

Free junior college tuition with no tax increase; and eliminating evergreen clause from future city contracts.

What concrete action can you promise residents you will take within your first 100 days, if elected (if anything)?

Immediately get to work implementing progressive policies that will move the city forward.

Indicate a recent City Council decision that you disagree with and why:

The handling/mishandling of the Fire Union contract (needs no explanation) and not bidding on hosting the 2020 Republican National Convention.

Indicate a recent City Council decision that you agree with and why:

Working with the state of Texas on the Alamo Project.

Please say something nice about a mayoral candidate of your choice:

I’m a nice guy, but not that nice! Tell my young friends, Ron & Greg, to get ready for a dash to the finish line!

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Greg Brockhouse

Courtesy / Greg Brockhouse

Greg Brockhouse

What is your current or most recent occupation and/or main source of income? (please indicate if retired)

I am a small business owner with two companies: one is a janitorial service and the second a marketing business. I have also completed my mortgage licensing to re-enter mortgage sales and lead generation.

Age? Where were you born? Where did you grow up? In what neighborhood do you currently live?

I am 46 years old and was born in Peoria, Illinois. My family returned to San Antonio shortly after my summer birth and I was raised in San Antonio. I live in District 6, off of Westover Hills.

List of previous public offices you’ve sought or held:

I ran for District 6 in 2013, but lost. I returned in 2017 to win the District 6 seat, which I currently hold.

What (if any) is your campaign slogan/political motto?

I do not use a campaign slogan.

What past experiences make you qualified to be mayor of San Antonio?

I am uniquely qualified as a lifelong resident of San Antonio. I am a veteran of the Air Force, small business owner, and a former banking executive. I have been actively involved in local politics and governance for over 10 years. I have seen all aspects of public service work at City Hall, having been a Council aide, chief of staff and now a sitting Council member. I have led large and small organizations, small businesses and have the cut payrolls and managed the needs of hundreds of employees. I bring a resume unparalleled by any other candidate for mayor.

What problems/issues would you prioritize and how would you work to fix/mitigate them?

I believe San Antonio is headed down the wrong path and needs a back-to-basics approach to local governance. That includes a respect for taxpayer money and a focus on neighborhoods and community building. I will bring a stark contrast to the incumbent mayor and my candidacy offers a clear choice for voters. I will prioritize and focus on the following: wage inequality and job creation, public safety, lower property taxes, neighborhood building, and total transparency at City Hall.

Top items my team will focus on when I am elected mayor:

1. Job Creation and wage inequality: Solving wage issues cures nearly all problems for our residents. More money for residents means a better quality of life, better housing and better transportation options. We must chase every job possible and bring them to San Antonio. We must heavily invest in workforce education to help our residents be prepared for all levels of employment opportunities.

2. Lower property tax rates and fee reductions: City Hall must return money to taxpayers. Skyrocketing property values demand property tax rate reductions. Additionally, the City charges far too many fees that need to be reduced. I will examine all fees and taxes the City charges to ensure they are necessary and properly utilized.

3. We must fully fund the police and fire departments. Public safety is job one at City Hall and we must repair our relationships with our first responders and fully staff both departments.

4. Be a neighborhoods-first mayor. I will spend my time in the community, building neighborhoods. That means focusing on infrastructure and neighborhood specific plans by Council district.

5. Full and total transparency: I will end backroom deals and the abuses of executive sessions. All decisions and policymaking will be in front of the public.

What concrete action can you promise residents you will take within your first 100 days, if elected (if anything)?

Within 100 days, I will call for a full and total review of all taxes and fees being levied by the City. We will determine their effectiveness and return on taxpayer investment. I will focus on ensuring the City Council works as a team, with everyone involved. No Council members will be left out. I will have district-specific plans ready by the end of the first 100 days.

Indicate a recent City Council decision that you disagree with and why:

I disagree with the focus of the mayor’s multiple task forces. Specifically, the Mayor’s Housing Policy Task Force, ConnectSA, and SA Climate Ready. The problem with these three task forces are the far reaching cost structures and dependency on taxpayer resources for implementation. Combined, they represent over $10 billion in potential spending over the next 10 years. I believe the focus should be on one major aspirational goal, a return to basic city governance and funding the day-to-day City operations to the best of our ability.

I am a firm believer that these are taxpayer resources and as such, they should be highly focused on neighborhood goals and basics first. The mayor has consistently created task forces that abdicate the role of City Council members to a vast unelected bureaucracy. In doing so, he has left out the elected representatives of our City. Council members are the voice of their districts. I worry these programs will hurt job creation and wage growth and, when implemented, they will increase the cost of living for our residents.

Indicate a recent City Council decision that you agree with and why:

I am in full support of the Council’s decision to hire Erik Walsh as our next city manager. Erik is well qualified and a lifelong resident of San Antonio. He understands our city, its people and its past. He also presents a well thought out transition from Sheryl Sculley’s 13-year tenure. I believe this change and the hiring of Erik is good for our community and will give us the chance to redefine what we stand for and where we want to go in the next 10 years. I am proud that we found the right candidate, who was standing before us all along. This proved the charter amendment had little to no effect on city manager hiring and for that I agree we are on the right track with Erik Walsh.

Please say something nice about a mayoral candidate of your choice:

Ron Nirenberg is a great father and husband. I see his love for his family and it shines through when he speaks of Jonah and Erika. We may have vast differences on policy and approach, but I am willing to bet Ron and I could talk for hours on how blessed we are with the wives and children in our lives.

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Michael “Commander” Idrogo

(No response.)
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13 thoughts on “San Antonio, Meet Your 2019 Mayoral Candidates

  1. There is no way that the city can fully fund the fire and police departments (at the levels they think of as being fully funded), lower property taxes, and continue to provide other needed basic city services. That’s just wishful thinking that will lead to big problems in the future , and to try to do so would move the city further from the goal of equitable funding, would increase the costs for borrowing money (due to further lowering of our bond ratings), and would likely eventually lead it toward bankruptcy. That’s why I will not vote for one of the candidates.

    • You are so right! I feel Brockhouse is in this for himself. He also uses the fire department and police departments as justification for these departments being above hard working citizens. The fire department will bankrupt San Antonio if he is elected. He will divide our city that is unrecognizable and hurt the poor further. He is in it to deepen his pockets on citizen backs.

      • Such narrowness of thought requires a deeper delving into the candidates on and individual basis and not an all encompassing opinion. Not much worth in the latter comment.

  2. The position of mayor is non-partisan. It is unfortunate that some candidates will introduce their political party into the campaign process. Without intent to come across as racist, it is also unfortunate that some introduce race as an issue.

  3. Great article. With all due respect to all of the candidates, the race will probably come down to a Ron Nirenberg and Greg Brockhouse. Based on answers given to the questionnaire, Brockhouse has a lot of refining to do, especially related to how he plans to demand higher wages from companies that city politicians have no control over. Secondly, explain what he means by fully fund public safety departments, heavily invest in job training, support neighborhood-building and invest in infrastructure; and what programs he plans cut since he wants to fund these efforts AND reduce city fees and taxes. Lastly, his charge that task forces abdicate city council’s role as decision makers is simply not the case since task forces don’t make any final decision, council does. Making this assertion in light of his support of the recent city charter amendments, which actually did abdicate council decisions to unelected groups, is an insult to the intelligence of San Antonio voters.

  4. the wasteful pet projects must come to an end and all the outside of San Antonio involvements should come to an end we have enough problems right here in this City the Chief of Police has got to go new blood is needed new Ideas new approach altogether

  5. Looks like Ron Nirenberg staff was ready to cut down Greg Brockhouse. I find it refreshing that Greg Brockhouse platform is about bringing local government back to it citizens issues and problems.

    I do not support Ron Nirenberg the city hall insiders, developers and lobbyists candidate. We deserve better in San Antonio.

    • I mean, if you haven’t been paying attention the last two years, that is all Brockhouse has done. Now he’s cleaning it up because he’s burned a lot of bridges. I for one have been on the receiving end of Brocky Boy’s puerile actions, insults, and other idiocy. I have records of facebook and personal interactions where he actively denies verifiable information and hurls insults at constituents. Even once from a literal neighbor he insulted and said”comeback when you understand the district (6)” and they replied “Greg I live one block over from you.” He tried to apologize at that point.

  6. Brockhouse is a terrible councilman. I live in his district, and all he does is disrespect people. His office won’t answer any basic questions or even return phone messages or emails. He ignores the elderly. He only cares about his political agenda. I think he is the worst council member I have seen in a long time. I cannot wait to have a new council member for my district. I hope the city of San Antonio doesn’t vote for him. He literally doesn’t care about the citizens at all.

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