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Section A: General News


Candidates’ Forum • May 12 General Election


Candidates’ Forum • May 12 General Election
Robert Gregory, Marie Gerlich, Linda Peña Oritz


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April 11, 2012
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City of La Vernia

Robert Gregory

Mayor

My name is Robert Wilson Gregory. I am running for the office of mayor of La Vernia.

My wife and I have lived in the La Vernia community for the past 15 years. We have a son who graduated from La Vernia, and a daughter currently in eighth grade. I work for Sullair as the area manager.

I have served the La Vernia community as a member of the Planning and Zoning Committee. More recently, I have been appointed to the Wilson County Appraisal District board, representing the city of La Vernia and the LVISD. My wife and I were active in the LV Athletic Booster Club for several years.

As mayor, my goals would be to see the completion of the water well project that would benefit our city tremendously and continue with improvements to our infrastructure, which is needed as our city expands with new homes and businesses. Most important, not lose sight of what makes our city special and why we call it home, and I’ll do my part to ensure responsible growth.

I want La Vernia to have a choice when it comes to the mayor’s office and I’m asking for your vote on May 12!

Marie Gerlich

Mayor

My name is Marie Gerlich and I am seeking the office of mayor for the city of La Vernia.

I spent 39 years in the public school system. I worked as a teacher, principal, and assistant superintendent.

I am a lifelong resident of La Vernia, educated in the La Vernia school system, and a member of St. Ann Catholic Church.

I have served as city council member for the past two years and on the Wilson County Appraisal District board for three years.

The opportunity to serve as mayor of La Vernia will allow me to use my experiences to be a part of the continued growth of our city. This position requires a background in the budget and taxing process to ensure funds are used in the most efficient way possible. It also requires that a person be available to listen to citizens and explore ways to ensure continued progress.

La Vernia is currently in a period of growth, as we have witnessed with the location of new businesses. As mayor, I would direct my attention to infrastructure needs to continue supporting and promoting La Vernia.

Thank you for your vote May 12.

City of Elmendorf

Tom M. Green Jr.

Mayor

My name is Tom M. Green Jr.; I have been a resident of Elmendorf for 21 years. I have served on the city council for six years, prior to May 2011.

Our city is being sued for $4 million. I can only wonder what will happen if we lose this civil action. Will the burden be placed on the citizens of Elmendorf?

If elected, I intend to find out what brought on this civil action and take immediate action to rectify the issue. Our city cannot afford to lose a lawsuit of this magnitude.

This past year, Mayor Manuel Decena and our city council increased our property taxes by almost 50 percent. If elected, I intend to review this heavy tax burden placed on our citizens. If I determine it is not justified, I will do all I can to rescind the tax increase.

I intend to review all city positions and job descriptions, and find out if salaries conform with other cities our size. I will temporarily request the assistance of a human resources specialist to bring us into conformance with the state of Texas standards and regulations.

I respectfully request your support and vote on May 12.

Linda Peña Ortiz

Alderman, Place 5

My name is Linda Peña Ortiz. I was born and raised in Elmendorf. My father was one of the original council members in 1963.

I attended ECISD until graduation. I was married to Hector Casanova Ortiz for 19 years and have been a widow for 18 years. I have lived in Elmendorf all my life, except when my late husband was in the Army.

I have been involved with the city since 1996; it has been an honor and a privilege to serve on the city council for 14 years.

I served on the board of directors with NHS of San Antonio for 12 years. I am active with St. Anthony’s Catholic Church and organizations, such as ACTS, Guadalupana Family Society, and the annual church festival.

I seek re-election because we are a growing community and I believe we need continued progress to make Elmendorf a better place for all citizens. I have the commitment, patience, and determination to take on this endeavor.

I believe it is important to continue with streets and drainage, animal control, and our new municipal building. With the coming of Dollar General and Weatherford, we hope to bring new jobs and additional improvements to Elmendorf.

All local candidates were invited to submit an article for the candidates’ forum. These four are the only candidates that responded. Early voting for the May 12 election is April 30 through May 8.
 

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