Tag Archives: election

Unofficial Voting Results 5/14 Election

The unofficial election results for the City of Needville and Needville ISD are below. You may see the voting statistics at http://www.co.fort-bend.tx.us/upload/images/elections_administration/election_results/er110514_01.pdf.  Results will be considered official after appropriate canvassing authorities certify the election results.

Mayor City of Needville, Vote For 1

Delbert Wendt ran unopposed for re-election received 228 votes.

 Alderman City of Needville, Vote For 2

  • Alex Warncke           125 votes        22.60%(unofficial winner 1 of 2)
  • Scott McElrath         64 votes         11.57%
  • Pam Blasingame      69 votes         12.48%
  • Harriet Karnei         56 votes         10.13%
  • Clarence Lamensky 80 votes        14.47%
  • George Krejci, Jr.     159votes         28.75%(unofficial winner 2 of 2)

 The Needville City Council will canvass and certify the election on May 24th at 7:00 pm at Needville City Hall just prior to the EDC Meeting.

Needville ISD Trustee Election

 Trustee, Position 1(Unexpired 2 Year Term) NISD:

  • Kim Teykl                             326 votes       69.36% (unofficial winner)
  • Sandra Ognoskie Wendt    144 votes       30.64%

Needville ISD Trustees, Positions 6 &7,   held by Kim Janke and Chris Janicek were unopposed and will be re-elected.

Clarence Lamensky: City Council Candidate

Survey:

Name/Occupation: __Clarence Lamensky, Retired Previous Employers – Occidental Petroleum -36 years, Fort Bend County Drainage District – 10 yrs, Owned and Operated Lamensky Plumbing for over 25 years______

Position Sought (incumbents too): _City Council Alderman_____________________________

 

 

1.       Please share information about your education, professional experience, and community service to give citizens a more complete picture of you as a candidate:  Clarence Lamensky –  married to Ora Lee Tielke Lamensky for 61 years.  I have five children: David Lamensky, Richard Lamensky, Lori Lamensky Demny, Patti Lamensky Jan, Kristi Lamensky Novosad.  In addition I have ten grandchildren, Jacqueline Lamensky, Cassy Lamensky Baldwin, Matthew Pribble, Kirby, Coleman, and Madison Jan, Tucker and Tristant Novosad and Clayton Demny.  I am proud to also say I have two Great Grandsons, Brandon and Wyatt Baldwin.  I have been on the City Council for over 14 years.  I played an instrumental part in cleaning up the railroad track that was running parallel to Highway 36 through our town.  I was out there with the other men physically cleaning the railroad to help beautify our town.  I am a retired member of the Needville Volunteer Fire Department, where I have been a member for 60 years, and a member of Immanuel United Church of Christ.  In addition, I have been a member of the 4B corporation.  I have been a supporter of the Needville Youth Fair for many years.   I have volunteered with the Needville Harvest Festival for many years, as well as a supporter for the Barbara Jordan Park.  Needville Little League is another organization that I support.  I helped play an instrumental part in having the metal donated to help build those wonderful covers over the bleachers and dugouts at the Little League Park.  I feel that this not only helped the Little League but it was a big plus for the Children and parents who spend many evenings and hot Saturday’s at the park during Ball Season.. I worked for Occidental Petroleum Company  where I retired after 36 years.  I also worked for Fort Bend County Drainage for 10 years as a Supervisor .  In addition I owned and ran Lamensky Plumbing for over 30 years.

2.      What is your main reason for seeking the position listed above as a candidate or incumbent?

I care about Needville.  This has been my home and my families home for over 50 years.  I have always been actively supporting and volunteering with organizations to help better Needville.  I have served as Alderman for the past 14 years.  I have always had an open ear and listened and helped the citizens of Needville with any of their concerns.  It takes sincere dedication to run a city, and I am 100% dedicated to this wonderful community I call home.

3.      Name your top three priorities for the city and how you would plan on implementing them?

I am currently working with City officials on trying to get a new water well drilled for Needville.  Despite what many people think, it takes time to make this happen.  As for new businesses, I welcome the chance to get new businesses in this town to help with taxes, the problem we face though is sometimes beyond our control.  There are state regulations that impact the location of new businesses in regards to available property.  This is something that is beyond the control of the city government but we are constantly working on it.

 

 4.      What ideas do you have for attracting businesses and homeowners to the area in the immediate future?

Currently tax abatements are available  to new businesses and  through the 4B Corporation, grants are available for beautification and landscaping.  The 4B Corporation also offers grants for businesses to purchase signs.  As far as attracting new homeowners, our wonderful school district helps us with this.  The City of Needville works with the School District constantly to help attract new homeowners, along with new development.

5.      Do you support the use of zoning or residential ordinances within the city limits? Please offer an explanation.

I do support residential ordinances.  The residential ordinances are in place in order to keep Needville at a certain standard and to keep our city safe to live in.  This community is a close knit community where citizens are multitalented.  We have citizens who currently have businesses out of their homes.  If zoning was enforced, it would cause these business  to cease to exist.  This would not be a positive for Needville as it would reduce taxes.  Therefore, I believe we need to support these small businesses wherever we can. 

 6.      What efforts do you believe could be made, or have been made, by the City of Needville to provide greater governmental transparency to the citizens of Needville?

As a member of the city council, I have always had an open door policy.  I receive phone calls all the time from citizens over concerns.  I don’t take these lightly.  I follow through with anything that is brought to my attention in which I am asked to help look into.  If anyone has a question or a concern, they are welcome to call me or stop by my house and talk to me. 

 

 

  1. 7.      What other issues or ideas would you like to share with voters to support your candidacy?

I am a retired citizen of Needville who has the time to interact with the city employees and  is available to  take care of the concerns of the community.  In this time of computers and internet, we need to remember the elderly members of our community.  There are a lot of senior citizens who no longer drive and can get around, but they do know how to get in touch with me if they have a problem or a concern and I guarantee you, I will listen and help them.  The same goes to the rest of this community.  I am always here ready to listen and help.

George Krejci: City Council Candidate

Needvillenews.com created a City Council Candidate Survey in the hopes that incumbents and candidates would share their background, strengths, and ideas for the citizens to consider in advance of the election. Candidates were asked to complete the survey by May 8th, 2011,  with the understanding that responses to questions would be published unedited and without commentary by NeedvilleNews.com.

Below are the responses by candidate George Krejci.

Survey:

Name/Occupation:   George H. Krejci Jr.  / Educator

______________________________________________________________________________

Position Sought (incumbents too):  Needville City council – Alderman ______________________________________________________________________

 

 

1.       Please share information about your education, professional experience, and community service to give citizens a more complete picture of you as a candidate:

I graduated Needville High School 1973, attended WCJC 2 years, Graduated from Sam Houston State University1977  with a B.S. Degree in Agriculture Education.

In my 34 for years as an educator I spent 17 years serving as a Board of director for the state organization for agriculture teachers, the Vocational Agriculture Teacher Association of Texas, some 1600 member in the state. .  The last 5 of those years I serve as an officer concluding my term as President in 2004 -2005.  During the 17 year span I spent many days in Austin visiting the Legislators on Capitol Hill concerning issues that would affect the education of our young students attending the Public School System.  The time I spent in Austin interacting with the legislators has given me and insight and the knowledge of the legislative process.  I feel this knowledge will be beneficial to the citizens of Needville when legislative issues that concern small town municipalities become items of concern in Austin.  In 2002, I was appointed to serve on the Texas FFA Board of Directors.  The FFA is the largest youth organization in the United States.  The State of Texas has the largest number of members some 80,000 plus of the national organization.  I served on the Texas FFA board of Directors for 5 years; the last year I served I held the position, Chairman of the Board.  In 2009 I was selected as the recipient of the State of Texas Outstanding Agriculture Teacher of the Year Award.

For the community I have worked for the past 34 years with the Fort Bend County Fair Associations Livestock Department and the Needville Youth Fair Association.  I have served on every livestock committee and have chaired all those committees except the goats.  I serve as Livestock Superintendent over all committees 2 years.  At the Needvile Youth Fair I have also chaired the lambs, poultry and the rabbit committees. I served as the Livestock Superintendent for 2 years and as President for two years.  I am currently the Poultry superintendent at the State Fair of Texas in Dallas, and the Rabbit Superintendent at the STAR Austin Fair and Rodeo in Austin.

My wife and I attend St. Michaels Catholic Church where I serve as a Lector, Eucharistic and Chalice Minister.  We have two daughters and 4 grandchildren who live in the Needville area.  I am a member of the Knights of Columbus Council 7067 and Assembly 1114. I have volunteered and worked at many of the community fund raisers throughout the years in support of the youth organizations ans well as for the benefits for community members who were in need of financial support due to accidents or illnesses.

 

2.      What is your main reason for seeking the position listed above as a candidate or incumbent?

I feel that we, Needville, are stuck in the 1980’s.  It is time for us to move forward to the 21stcentury and to be the front runners in Fort Bend County.   I feel it is time to be proactive.  It is time for us to go seek the industry we so deserve to come and set up shop in Needville.  They will not come to us.  We must go to them.

We need the type of industry that will hire our residence so that we don’t have to drive to the east end of the county or into the Houston area.  Fort Bend County is labeled as one of the fasted growing counties in the United States.  Needville deserves a piece of the industry pie not just the rooftops.  I don’t particularly like being referred to as a “Bedroom Community”   i.e.  Our residences eat and sleep here but work elsewhere.   Do You?  

3.      Name your top three priorities for the city and how you would plan on implementing them?

  1. a.      My number one priority is the economic development of Needville.  We have 4 entities in Needville that can make this happen. The city council, The Economic Development Committee,  The Needville Chamber of Commerce, and the Needville ISD School Board.  Visiting with various people that serve on these entities, I have realized that they all have a common goal, the economic development of Needville.  What I have concluded is that they are trying to get this done independently of each other.  My plan is to get all four “Pulling the Wagon” in the same direction.
  2. b.      Public service for the residence.   Again feedback from citizen.  What are you going to do about the water being brown?   Seems like a minor thing?  If it is so minor why is it one of the main question I get asked?   I want to find the source point a resolve the issue once and for all.
  3. c.       Safety of our citizens is a third priority.  To me this itself covers three areas, EMS, Fire Dept, and Police Dept.  For years I have questioned county officials as to why Needville does not have an Ambulance housed in Needville.    The answer was always size of the population.   It is time, we get one housed here.  I will work hard to get this accomplished.    The Fire Dept.  is a volunteer dept.  Relying heavily and fundraisers to support its operation and existence.    I want review the Fire Dept. budget. I want to review the Cities budget to see what ways we the city can help these volunteers without putting a burden on the taxpayers.  In a sense we are burdening the tax payers now. Who supports the Fire Departments Fundraiser?   Yes your right, the tax payers of Needville.   The Police Departments job is to protect and serve the citizens of Needville. I have been told that the Police Dept. has the lowest paid officers in fort Bend County.   I have been told that a new hire officer makes in the neighborhood of $27k.  WOW if that is true shame on us!  I have student who work through my work program class at school who make $12k in a school year working part time!  If that is what our Police Officer are being paid then scrutinizing of the city budget is in order.

 4.      What ideas do you have for attracting businesses and homeowners to the area in the immediate future?

To attract either the first thing is to expand our ETJ, i.e. city limits.  In order to attract industry to needvile we have to “sell”  Needville.   We must first show them that the location of Needville to the Port of Freeport and the ease of getting on U.S. 59.   You have to offer incentives to them in the form of tax abatement.  Show them the work force that already lives here.  This along with making the city cosmetically appealing will help the four entities working close together attract industry to Needville. 

Currently the NISD is a well sought after district.  I see the growth at the school on a daily bases.  The problem is the housing growth that accommodates the increase in student body is in the rural part of the school district.   We must broaden the ETJ to get the housing growth within our taxing boundaries.

 5.      Do you support the use of zoning or residential ordinances within the city limits? Please offer an explanation.

 Zoning is referred to as building restrictions in area of a city or town.   I am in favor of zoning but with limited restrictions.  If we intend to entice industry we don’t need restriction that would prevent them from wanting to come to Needville.

City ordinances, again an area we must be firm but within reason.  The common sense approach to restrictions is definitely one that I will follow.

 

6.      What efforts do you believe could be made, or have been made, by the City of Needville to provide greater governmental transparency to the citizens of Needville?

 The city and the chamber both have a web site.   Now how many people in the community are aware of this?  The web sites do lack a great bit of information that should be available to the citizens.  I think it is a matter of someone just taking the charge and getting the web site managed properly.  The Economic Development Committee, first a lot of people I have spoken to did not know we have such a committee.  Their plans and “Wish List for Needville”should be made public through the internet as well.  We no longer can rely on “Word of Mouth” or the newspaper to let people know what is going on with their city government.

7.      What other issues or ideas would you like to share with voters to support your candidacy?

 I have no issues nor do I have an “Ax to Grind.”  I will be “PROACTVE”.   I have answered the above question with sincerity and from the heart.  I will listen to the citizens of Needville.  I am willing to sit down and talk to anyone who wants to have input in their local government.   I want to be your voice at city Hall.

I hope you find it in your heart on May 14, to vote for me, George H. Krejci Jr. for Needville City Council – Alderman.

Thank you for taking the time to read my response to this survey.

George Krejci, Jr

Sandra Ognoskie Wendt: NISD Board Position 1 Candidate

Sandra Ognoskie Wendt is running as a candidate for the Needville Independent School District Trustee Position 1.  Wendt is running against Kim Teykl who was appointed to finish an unexpired term vacated by Mike Raska.

Needvillenews.com created a NISD Board of Trustees Candidate Survey in the hopes that incumbents and candidates would share their background, strengths, and ideas for the citizens to consider in advance of the election. Candidates were asked to complete the survey by May 8th, 2011,  with the understanding that responses to questions would be published unedited and without commentary by NeedvilleNews.com.

The unedited content is presented below, as submitted by Sandra Ognoskie Wendt.

Survey:

Name/Occupation:  Sandra Ognoskie Wendt /Senior Accounting Clerk ______________________________________________________________________________

Position Sought (incumbents too): NISD Position 1 School Board

_____________________________________________________________________

1.       Please share information about your education, professional experience, and community service to give citizens a more complete picture of you as a candidate:

I was a graduate of the Needville Class of 1980.  I attended Sam Houston State University.  I worked at the First National Bank of Rosenberg for 10 years, owner/manager of Good Beginnings Day Care for 10 years and I am currently working for Fort Bend County Treasurer where I have been employed for the last 8 years.  I have served as the leader of Guy 4-H, served as treasurer of the FBC 4-H Parent Leaders Association, member of the Harvest Fest Committee and am currently serving on the church council for St. John’s UCC in Rosenberg. 

2.      What is your main reason for seeking the position listed above as a candidate or incumbent?

The main reason I am seeking the position is to get some fresh ideas back in our school system.  I am also ready to listen and help parents and/or tax payers on the concerns they are having with the school system.

 3.      Name your top three priorities for the school district and how you would plan on implementing them?

  1. Cut the budget but not cut teachers.  We have a large amount of people getting paid way to much in areas that do not have anything to do with teaching our kids.
  2. Get the district paid twice a month instead of once a month and this can be done by upgrading our payroll system.
  3. Get our academics back on top of the priority list.

4.      The financial outlook for public schools in Texas is dire this year. What actions would you implement/ support locally to reduce budget expenditures while saving educator jobs from cuts?                     

Get rid of programs and activities that are costing too much money and not enhancing our academics. Cut salaries on people that do not teach. Cut down on some of the stipends paid and how much is paid. Freeze all salaries until the state gets more stable and our state money increases.  I definitely would not be giving any raises no matter how great an employee is while in the next breath you are talking about being a million dollars short and laying off teachers, which is what the current board has done.

 5.      What efforts do you believe could be made, or have been made, by the Needville Board of Trustees to provide greater community engagement with the residents of the school district?

I think it is important that the board attend as many functions as possible at all campuses.  Some board members do attend a lot of the things and some members you never see.  Also you need to be approachable so people feel they can talk to you and walk away with the feeling that their child is the most important person at school.

 6.      What other issues or ideas would you like to share with voters to support your candidacy?

(Please attach additional pages as needed)

I would like to help get a better grading system for our teachers besides using the bases of the TAKS testing scores.  I would like to see a class added to the high school level that prepares kids for the real world of balancing check books, managing credit cards and financial issues in general.  We do this at the junior high level but I think we need to also do one as well before they graduate.

Pam Blasingame: City Council Candidate

 

Needvillenews.com created a City Council Candidate Survey in the hopes that incumbents and candidates would share their background, strengths, and ideas for the citizens to consider in advance of the election. Candidates were asked to complete the survey by May 8th, 2011,  with the understanding that responses to questions would be published unedited and without commentary by NeedvilleNews.com.

The unedited content is presented below, as submitted by Pam Blasingame

Survey:

 

Name/Occupation: Pam Blasingame/Paralegal

Position Sought (incumbents too): City Council-Alderman

1.Please share information about your education, professional experience, and community service to give citizens a more complete picture of you as a candidate:

I moved to Needville from Austin where I was born and raised almost 20 years ago when Robert (“Bubba”) and I married.   Our family has lived in the Needville area since that time.   Robert and I have a 17 year old daughter, Bailey, who is currently a Junior at NHS.  Bailey is a Varsity Cheerleader and member of Needville FFA.  Robert and I are actively involved with Bailey’s FFA projects, raising and showing livestock, and we support the Needville Youth Fair, Fort Bend County Fair, and the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, among other organizations.  Our family loves and supports NISD athletics, particularly, Blue Jay Football.   Go Jays!!   I have a son, Dalton Wallace, from a prior marriage.   Robert helped me raise Dalton, who entered NISD in the 3rd grade.  He graduated from NHS in 2002.   Dalton is now 27 and lives and works in Austin.  As for service to the community, Robert, Bailey and I are members of St. Michael’s Catholic Church, where Robert and I serve as Extraordinary Ministers.   Robert is a proud 4th Degree Knight, and I support KC activities and events, as well.

Professionally, I have worked 30 years in the legal field, the majority of those years in the capacity of a litigation paralegal.    By way of overview, as a litigation paralegal, I participate in all aspects of case preparation, and provide trial assistance and Courtroom support to attorneys practicing in Federal, State, and County Courts at Law.   Since 2006, I have worked in the Admiralty & Maritime Law section of the Houston office of Chamberlain Hrdlicka.   The primary focus of our practice group is representing offshore drilling contractors and dredging companies, defending Jones Act and General Maritime claims brought by injured workers.  Prior to 2006, I spent about 10 years with a general insurance defense practice in Sugar Land.    When I first moved to Needville, I worked a number of years for the Houston firm f/k/a Hirsch Glover, providing litigation and trial support to a practice group whose forte was defending claims brought against municipalities and their government officials and local police departments and county government officials and law enforcement agencies.    In 1986, I attained a Paralegal Certification from Durham Nixon Clay Business College-Austin, following a two-year course study.   I had already spent about 5 years in the legal field at the time I pursued Certification.

2.  What is your main reason for seeking the position listed above as a candidate or incumbent?

 

The residents of Needville deserve a City Council that is creative and forward thinking, one that is proactive, diligent, and deals in an assertive and forthright manner with respect to any and all issues before it.    In my line of work, it is paramount that I not only possess but that I also utilize daily each of these same traits.    Our current City Council does not appear to possess these traits, or at the very least, has lost the ability to effectively utilize them.     As a consequence, the City has remained dormant for an extended time and is now stagnating under what I characterize as the “our hands are tied” and “we’re doing everything we can with what we have” attitude.

By no means should my comments be construed as feelings of ill will toward any current or former members of City Council.   As I said openly during the recent Candidate Forum, I appreciate and thank those individuals for their dedication and service to the City.    Having said that, it’s time we move forward.   The City has seen sizeable growth in recent years, and there is every indication this trend will continue in the near and obviously the distant future.   We must plan accordingly.   Certainly, we’ve all noticed how rapidly the Richmond-Rosenberg area is moving toward us, and how the boundaries of Sugar Land appear to be ever expanding.    While we should no longer sit idly by, moving forward simply cannot and will not happen with the “business as usual attitude” of the current City Council.

My general philosophy is that one truly has no standing to voice concerns AND expect such concerns to be addressed unless he/she is willing to become part of the solution-making process.   I am sure we have all heard too many complaints by persons who are unwilling to act.    Said another way, we all know people who do nothing but gripe and complain, yet offer little if anything by way of constructive input.   I am more than willing and prepared and I am certainly able to act on behalf of the City and its residents.   In essence, the primary reason I seek election to the position of City Council-Alderman is to become part of the solution-making process.

3.  Name your top three priorities for the city and how you would plan on implementing them?

  1. Closely scrutinize the City’s Budget.    I would start by attempting to identify and eliminate any waste within the Budget, and scale back funding of any non-essential services, if and where possible.    The goal here being apportionment of available funds to essential public services such as the Police and Fire Departments.   From what I can discern, both have lacked adequate support and funding in the past.
  2. See protracted water well project to fruition, without further delay.   While the current water system continues to deteriorate, our rates have increased to the point where it takes a second or third job to be able to afford to water the lawn.  The additional well should ease burden on the existing well(s).     Hopefully, this will also eliminate the rust-tinged water and other issues most of us experience with the current system.
  3. Research economic development opportunities, and design and implement various marketing tools to attract new businesses and their resultant stream of commerce and tax revenue to the City. Ferreting out economic development opportunities will require creativity and diligence.    This process will not happen overnight.   A proactive and steadfast approach to this endeavor will be the only way to make up for lost time.    Some additional thoughts follow.

4. What ideas do you have for attracting businesses and homeowners to the area  in the immediate future?

The trend of families moving into NISD has been steady for many years.  Several subdivisions which I mentioned during the recent Candidate Forum (Fallwood, Highland Pointe, and others) were not in existence 20 years ago when I moved to Needville.    These subdivisions account for a sizeable number of homeowners within the City, which in turn, translates into a sizeable number of taxpayers and tax revenue.  I do not believe attracting homeowners to Needville is a problem.  Attracting businesses to Needville, on the other hand, will be a real challenge.   For starters, consider a brief period of abatement of sales or other taxes as an incentive.   We should also research to locate and apply for any and all available funds toward economic development.   Any funds the City has previously been awarded should be utilized vs. placed on hold for an indefinite period.   Find a means by which to comply with the parameters of any funding award, and utilize those funds.   Other ideas are to tout the quaintness of our community and its close proximity to “big city” business just a few miles down the road.    Tout the successes of NISD.   Again, creativity and diligence will be required to identify businesses that would consider relocation to Needville.

5.  Do you support the use of zoning or residential ordinances within the city limits? Please offer an explanation.

Generally speaking, I support zoning or residential ordinances.    Homes with piles of bagged garbage, broken lawn equipment, vehicles in various stages of disrepair, and other general clutter not only make our City less pleasing to the eye, these conditions also present health concerns.  Ordinances requiring homeowners and/or their tenants to rectify this unsightliness would certainly be welcome.  Ordinances requiring business owners to eliminate unsightly dumpster overflow and to clean up greasy and dirty sidewalks and exteriors that are overridden with cigarette butts would likewise be welcome.

6. What efforts do you believe could be made, or have been made, by the City of Needville to provide greater governmental transparency to the citizens of Needville?

The Texas Government Code dictates, among many other things, how for example open meetings of governmental bodies such as School Boards and City Councils are to be conducted, and, whether and to what extent and within what timeframe and at what cost information that has been requested and is not otherwise exempt from disclosure is to be made available to the public.   “Governmental transparency” isn’t discretionary.

With respect to the City’s website, I believe that any perceived lack of transparency in this regard is likely the result of operation and not design.   The fact that there exist dead links and other missing contact information does not in and of itself evidence lack of transparency.   The current status of the City’s website suggests that efforts by the City to move into the electronic age are slow to come.   In fairness, the expense associated with having a web master on board might well explain why the City’s website, at present, is neither navigationally-friendly, updated nor complete – it remains a work in progress.   As an aside, some of the “seasoned” lawyers I work with still profess that picking up the telephone is the most efficient means by which to gain information and/or make contact with someone.   A similar thought process may be prevalent amongst the City.

7. What other issues or ideas would you like to share with voters to support your candidacy?

As I commented during the Candidate Forum, hesitating to use the “C” word that was overused during the last Presidential Election, Needville is “different” than it was 20 years ago when I moved to the area.   The demographics alone over this same period have changed dramatically.  I believe it is this vast difference in demographics, and more broadly, the vast difference in the way our world is today vs. how it was 15-20 years ago, that renders ineffective the overall approach and pace by which our current City Council operates.

As many have recognized and I repeat here, the possibilities for the future of the City of Needville are endless.    With the right people in place, we can and will begin the process of moving forward.   I am hopeful that my participating in this Candidate Survey enlightens voters as to my overall thought processes.    I appreciate your time, and I ask for your support and vote on May 14th.

Pam Blasingame

Scott McElrath: City Council Candidate

Needvillenews.com created a City Council Candidate Survey in the hopes that incumbents and candidates would share their background, strengths, and ideas for the citizens to consider in advance of the election. Candidates were asked to complete the survey by May 8th, 2011,  with the understanding that responses to questions would be published unedited and without commentary by NeedvilleNews.com.

The unedited content is presented below, as submitted by Scott McElrath:

Survey:

Name/Age/Occupation:

Scott McElrath

Position Sought (incumbents too): Alderman

1. Please share information about your education, professional experience, and community service to give citizens a more complete picture of you as a candidate:

I’m a lifelong resident of the Needville Area. My wife, Sharon, and I have two kids.  Lindsey graduated from Needville High School in 2010.  Dane is a 6thgrader at Needville Middle School.  We’ve lived in the city limits since 1994.  I went to school in Needville back when the elementary school was on the other side of town.  I attended Texas State Technical Institute before I joined the United States Army.  I have served the community as a volunteer fireman for 10 years.  My volunteer efforts include 3 years as Fort Bend County’s 4H archery head coach in the late 90’s and currently as a coach for a non-profit wrestling team out of Rosenberg.  I’m employed with the City of Stafford as a state-licensed Code Enforcement Officer and Nuisance Abatement Inspector.

2. What is your main reason for seeking the position listed above as a candidate or incumbent?

I feel that there is great economic growth potential in the City of Needville. I wish to assist the current government in making this town an attractive location for new business.  Working day to day in the most profitable city in Fort Bend County, I see endless opportunities for Needville to enjoy its own successes. Fort Bend County is one of the fastest growing areas of the United States and Needville deserves the right to grow and become profitable as well.

3.Name your top three priorities for the city and how you would plan on implementing them?

  1. Attract new business.  Work with the economic development council to give companies a reason to want to move to Needville.
  2. Improve customer service at City Hall. With a motto of “Home of the Friendly People” we’ve got to be more accessible to our current residents and prospective business owners.  There is room for improvement regarding our internet communications and accessibility.  Insure that anyone needing assistance (Citizen or Business Owner) is served in an efficient timely manner.
  3. Improve the infrastructure of the city. The good ole boy system doesn’t exist in more successful communities.  Seek grants and assistance from the state. Discontinue micromanaging  and allow departments to run as they should and serve the people in their fullest capacities.

4. What ideas do you have for attracting businesses and homeowners to the area in the immediate future?

Expand the ETJ so that there is room in the city for businesses.  Give tax incentives for companies to build their businesses here.  New business means more employment which allows people to spend money, hopefully locally.  Make the city ascetically pleasing. Assist citizens in improving the appearance of their properties.  The areas surrounding Needville are enticing new business.  We can be a support community for those businesses.

5. Do you support the use of zoning or residential ordinances within the city limits? Please offer an explanation.

The City of Needville residential ordinances already exist but are rarely enforced.   If the city is not clean and neat no one will wish to be associated with it.  Would you eat in a dirty restaurant?  People will be more likely to stop in town if it looks nice, feels clean. And yes I support zoning. It protects the property owner and allows the city to plan for future growth.

6. What efforts do you believe could be made, or have been made, by the City of Needville to provide greater governmental transparency to the citizens of Needville?

Let’s get the city website fully functioning with every alderman’s contact information readily accessible.  I feel a town hall meeting should be held to inform the residents of Needville exactly what is going on with their city, and electronically post the minutes so that anyone can access them anytime.  We’ve got to keep up with the information age and move with technology.

7. What other issues or ideas would you like to share with voters to support your candidacy?

With the current economic condition of our country and $4.00+ /gallon of gas, we need now more than ever to keep the tax dollars in Needville. One individual will not solve the issues that lie before us. But one individual can ask questions and spark others to think in a new ways. We must work as a group to insure that the City of Needville has a bright economic future. Without business growth and taxable income the city services we all wish to improve (streets, drainage, water, police and fire protection) will not be attainable.  I feel it’s time for new thinking in Needville government. Don’t You?