Running for: Amarillo City Council Place 3
How he voted in the November 2016 city bond election: Yes to all seven propositions
What are your major campaign points and how do you plan to make them happen?
The first think is going to be, we want to change the tone on city council. That's one of the main reasons I began running is the people I had talked to, we want there to be respect restored to the city council. You know it's okay for us to discuss and debate and to do those things but when push comes to shove we need to make a decision. We need to come to a consensus and we need to be able to handle that in an appropriate manner so that others will look at us and have the same kind of respect. I think that actually goes all the way to the people that work for the City of Amarillo, I think that they've even lost trust and respect. So we've got to restore that all the way back through. The next things that I think have to happen are we've got to make sure our streets are taken care of, I hear that a lot. The other thing that I know we've got to do is we need to do every we can to make our neighborhoods safer. We've got to make sure that the police, the [firefighters], the first responders, that they're getting all the things that they need to be able to be successful. Those are really important. We've got to restore customer service in the city. We've got to make for sure that we've got economic development that's occurring across the entire city. It started downtown and now we need to make for sure that it spreads out [to everybody], that we're making small businesses thrive and prosper here in town. We have to cut the red tape. We've got to streamline the city processes so that we can see Amarillo grow.
Do you think the city should continue to issue bonds to fund future projects, or just use money allocated in the annual budget?
Whenever you start talking about the budget and those kinds of things, you have to look at it from both aspects. Some of the really large projects that we need to do - the infrastructure projects - it's going to be very hard to cash flow. There's going to be a portion of it that is going to have to have either general obligation bonds or certificates of obligation that are going to be done. And then also you're going to expect that drainage fees, enterprise fees, those kind of things are going to help take care of part of that, too. I think it's very complex and I think the complexity of it means that as we walk through it we have to take each one of them as they come along. We have to see how that fits. We don't want to incur too much debt on the city. We don't want to raise taxes any more than we have to on the city. And so we have to work our way through just the same way that you would have to work your way through in your own family budget. You know some things you can do now, some things you have to put off, so therefore we've got to have a plan for how we're going to work our way through that.
Do you think the city should have a role in economic development, or should that task fall solely on the Amarillo Economic Development Corporation?
I think the AEDC is supposed to help us bring in businesses. Do we have to be involved in it? Yeah I think we do because the city leadership, when these people come in and the AEDC is doing their part of it and they're bringing businesses here, I think they're going to want to meet with the city leaders. So I do believe that we do have a part in it. I guess that we have the part that we're going the make the choice between whether we want [them to be] either a type "A" or a type "B," and I would prefer for us to stay type "A" but I do know that we have a study that the city council started last year and I don't want to make a decision about that. I'm more than open to talking about that but I want to see that study come back in June and see exactly what the study says that we need to do.
What letter grade would you give to the current city council and why?
I'm not going to give them a letter grade. It is what it is. I just know that we can do better.
What do you think you would bring to the city council that's not there right now?
I've been a dentist for 30 years and so my 30 years have been spent treating over 7,000 patients and we have to negotiate through their dental health through their oral health and through the finances of how we're going to make all of this come to happen for them. So it is my responsibility to tell them what they need to have done, and to give them the different options and for us to figure out exactly how that works. I honestly believe that doing the same thing on the city council will be exactly in the same type, just on a grander scale. We have to look at what we have available, and we look at what are all the things we need to have done, and then we have to work our way through and have a plan just like we present a plan for the patients. These are the things you need to have done, and this is what we want it to look like at the end. We need to do the same thing and I believe that that's what I can bring to the city council.