Coun­cil seats, bonds on area bal­lots

Three sub­urbs are seek­ing the OK to es­tab­lish funds to main­tain streets

San Antonio Express-News (Sunday) - - Metro - By Jeff B. Flinn STAFF WRITER

“With the high cost of street main­te­nance, there is no other way to ef­fec­tively main­tain

the best streets … af­ter in­vest­ing $10.2 mil­lion in the 2015 street im­prove­ments

bond.”

Con­verse Mayor Al Suarez

Three subur­ban cities are ask­ing vot­ers to ap­prove es­tab­lish­ing funds to main­tain and re­pair city streets in this year’s gen­eral elec­tion.

Four cities — Ci­bolo, Con­verse, Schertz and Wind­crest — have con­tested City Coun­cil races on the Nov. 6 gen­eral elec­tion bal­lot. Early vot­ing be­gan last week and con­tin­ues un­til Fri­day.

In Con­verse, vot­ers are con­sid­er­ing a propo­si­tion that halves money in­tended for its Eco­nomic De­vel­op­ment Corp. to ad­dress street work. And Ci­bolo res­i­dents are de­cid­ing whether to reau­tho­rize the use of its sales-and-use tax, to the tune of one-quar­ter of 1 per­cent, for street rehab and re­pair.

Wind­crest res­i­dents are vot­ing on a $7.4 mil­lion bond pack­age to re­pair seven poor or fail­ing streets, and a $2 mil­lion bond pack­age for equip­ment for its Vol­un­teer Fire De­part­ment.

The road im­prove­ment pack­age of $7.4 mil­lion would ad­dress a half-dozen streets, in­clud­ing Ea­gle­crest, Mid­crown and Crest­way drives, three of the city’s pri­mary ar­te­rial road­ways.

A Wind­crest street com­mit­tee met once a week for two months to study street con­di­tions and to rate ev­ery one of them as good, poor or fail­ing. Other roads that would re­ceive some mill and over­lay work are sec­tions of Bal­four Drive, Fen­wick Drive, Fran­cis Drake and Wind­sor Hill.

The Wind­crest bal­lot also in­cludes a host of can­di­dates look­ing to fill three City Coun­cil seats whose cur­rent oc­cu­pants chose not to run for re-elec­tion.

Place 1 Coun­cil­man Gerd Ja­cobi, Place 2 Coun­cil­man James McFall and Place 3 Coun­cil­man — as well as Mayor Pro Tem Jim Shel­ton — chose not to de­fend their seats in the Nov. 6 elec­tion.

The three coun­cil mem­bers were the sub­jects of a failed re­call at­tempt in Jan­uary and Fe­bru­ary, when re­call or­ga­niz­ers ran out of time to get re­calls on the May bal­lot.

The Place 1 po­si­tion drew four can­di­dates: Ge­orge Alva, Sher­il­lyn Flick, Wes Man­ning and Bill Zu­laica. Three can­di­dates are seek­ing the Place 2 seat: Lou Miller, Rhonda Row­land and Cindy Strz­elecki. The Place 3 po­si­tion has two hope­fuls, Greg Turner and write-in can­di­date Pam Dod­son.

In Con­verse, Propo­si­tion A seeks to use half of the ex­ist­ing Eco­nomic De­vel­op­ment Corp. sales tax, which sits at one-half per­cent, to create a street main­te­nance fund of about $600,000.

The move is not a new tax but sim­ply would use one-quar­ter per­cent of the sales tax al­ready be­ing col­lected to main­tain re­cently paved streets and pre­pare for fu­ture im­prove­ment as the city ex­pands.

Mayor Al Suarez said split­ting the one-half per­cent sales tax be­tween the EDC and the street main­te­nance would have lit­tle

im­pact on the eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment agency.

“This will not af­fect the op­er­a­tion of the EDC, which cur­rently has over $2 mil­lion in re­serves,” Suarez said.

He pointed out that Ci­bolo, Wind­crest, Kirby and Selma al­ready have sim­i­larly funded street main­te­nance pro­grams in place.

“With the high cost of street main­te­nance, there is no other way to ef­fec­tively main­tain the best streets … af­ter in­vest­ing $10.2 mil­lion in the 2015 street im­prove­ments bond,” he said.

Con­verse like­wise has a crowded City Coun­cil bal­lot.

Cur­rent Place 4 City Coun­cil­woman Nancy Droneb­urg is run­ning for Place 2 to op­pose hope­ful Deb­o­rah James, a for­mer City Coun­cil mem­ber her­self.

Run­ning for Droneb­urg’s Place 4 seat are for­mer Coun­cil­woman Joan Lind­gren and Kate Silva, a for­mer Con­verse EDC ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor.

Place 6 fea­tures re­cent ap­pointee Marc Gilbert, most re­cently the EDC board pres­i­dent, who is op­posed by chal­lenger Billy Ortiz. Coun­cil­man Chris Clark, the cur­rent Place 2 rep­re­sen­ta­tive, chose not to run for re-elec­tion.

Ci­bolo vot­ers will de­cide three bond is­sues that seek $4.75 mil­lion for mu­nic­i­pal ren­o­va­tions, pub­lic safety com­mu­ni­ca­tion up­grades and two new parks.

Vot­ers also will be asked to reau­tho­rize the city’s onequar­ter per­cent sales and use it for con­tin­ued street main­te­nance and re­pair fund­ing.

Propo­si­tion 1 in­cludes $1.8 mil­lion for ren­o­va­tion of a for­mer school build­ing, given to the city by the SchertzCi­bolo-Uni­ver­sal City In­de­pen­dent School Dis­trict, for a City Hall an­nex.

An es­ti­mated $650,000 would go to­ward the city’s pub­lic works build­ing, and $450,000 would ad­dress ra­dio equip­ment for im­proved po­lice and fire com­mu­ni­ca­tions.

Propo­si­tion 2 tar­gets the re­con­struc­tion of Tolle Road, which is nearly im­pass­able af­ter heavy rains. The $2.9 mil­lion project has been part of the city’s cap­i­tal im­prove­ment plan for sev­eral years.

Propo­si­tion 3 ad­dresses two qual­ity of life is­sues. If ap­proved, a park would be cre­ated on 57 acres of land do­nated to the city by the Tolle fam­ily. The bond mea­sure would set aside $250,000 for Phase I of the Tolle Re­gional Com­mu­nity Park.

Ad­di­tion­ally, Propo­si­tion 3 would help con­struct a ball field for phys­i­cally and de­vel­op­men­tally chal­lenged in­di­vid­u­als. It would set aside $500,000 for the field, with an ad­di­tional $250,000 com­ing from the Ci­bolo YMCA, which also would man­age the field for the city.

The city has four City Coun­cil seats on the bal­lot: Dis­trict 1, in­cum­bent Jen­nifer Schultes faces Ben Dav­ila Jr.; Dis­trict 4, in­cum­bent Ted Gibbs is chal­lenged by Chad James and Chris Sch­lein; Dis­trict 5, in­cum­bent Jim Rus­sell faces Mark Allen; and Dis­trict 6, can­di­dates Dick Het­zel and Tim Wo­liver are vy­ing for the seat of Dis­trict 6 Coun­cil­man Jay Hogue, who is mov­ing from the dis­trict and will step down af­ter the elec­tion.

The city of Schertz has two can­di­dates vy­ing for each of two coun­cil seats. Place 6 can­di­dates are Al­li­son Hey­ward and Chelsea Skro­barcek; and Place 7 fea­tures in­cum­bent Bert Craw­ford and chal­lenger Tim Brown. Cur­rent Place 6 Coun­cil­woman An­gelina Kiser did not file for re-elec­tion.

To find early vot­ing lo­ca­tions and/or precinct vot­ing lo­ca­tions for Elec­tion Day, Con­verse, Schertz and Wind­crest vot­ers can go to bexar.org and click on the Elec­tions logo on the home page. There are more than 40 early vot­ing lo­ca­tions across Bexar County for these vot­ers.

Ci­bolo vot­ers should go to ci­bolotx.gov and click on Elec­tion In­for­ma­tion to find out about their early vot­ing lo­ca­tions and more.

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