Aside from selecting congressional and state leaders Nov. 6, voters in Converse, Cibolo, Schertz and Windcrest will decide city council contests.
Windcrest residents also will determine two bond issues regarding street funding and new fire trucks.
Unlike many other municipalities and school boards in the greater San Antonio area, Randolph Metrocom cities usually tie their election cycles to November’s national and state races.
Voters will consider a pair of bond proposals, in addition to choosing among eight residents vying to succeed three council members who all nixed re-election bids.
The electorate will weigh a 20-year general obligation bond to support $7.4 million in street and drainage fixes. Eaglecrest, Midcrown and Crestway drives are likely high-priority roads.
Also on the ballot, a 15-year general obligation bond to purchase a ladder truck and fire engine for the Windcrest Volunteer Fire Department.
On Aug. 9, council members said they wanted the voters’ input.
“If you don’t like it, don’t vote for it, but figure out another way we’re going to fix the streets or get more Fire Department equipment,” Councilman Gerd Jacobi said.
If the road and fire-equipment bonds are OK’d, the city’s debt-service tax rate could see hikes of 8 cents and 2 cents, respectively. Combining two approved proposals, a homeowner with $250,000 taxable value could see a $284 rise on annual property taxes.
Jacobi and two other councilmen, James McFall and Jim Shelton, aren’t running again for Places 1, 2 and 3, respectively.
The candidates are George Alva, Sherillyn Flick, Wes Manning and Bill Zulaica (Place 1); Lou Miller and Cindy Strzelecki (Place 2); and Greg Turner and write-in and former Councilwoman Pamela Dodson (Place 3).
An Aug. 20 deadline for candidate filings and calling elections passed with officials unable to certify recall petitions against Mayor Dan Reese and council members Frank Archuleta and Joan Pedrotti.
Numerous residents submitted affidavits, denying they signed a recall petition, but leaders behind the drive cited state law that signatures can’t be withdrawn. They also pledged to keep trying to get their recall attempt on the ballot.
Army veteran and small-business owner Ben Davila Jr. faces District 1 Councilwoman Jennifer Schultes, a systems administrator.
Davila is campaigning on bettering lines of communication between the council and constituents, encouraging a more business-friendly environment, raising accountability for contractors and companies working with the city, and ensuring infrastructure upgrades keep pace with development.
“I may not have all the answers, but I am willing to work hard to find the solutions,” Davila said.
Schultes, a nonprofit president, advocates improving infrastructure, public safety, interaction and transparency, and implementing long-range plans.
“The city has made steps in the right direction with communication and infrastructure, but we need to keep going,” she added.
Councilman Ted Gibbs, a retiree, program manager Chad Jones and network engineer Christopher Schlein filed for District 4.
Mark Allen, a business-systems analyst, challenges District 5 Councilman Jim Russell, a Scholastic book-fairs manager.
Defense contractor Tim Woliver, an Air Force retiree, and former Councilman Dick Hetzel vie to succeed District 6’s Jay Hogue, who declined a re-election bid.
Having served with several local committees and commissions, Woliver is campaigning on improving public safety and infrastructure, increasing commercial-tax revenue, and careful growth management.
“I am still a young person and have the energy necessary to tackle the issues to keep Cibolo on a successful trajectory,” he said.
Councilwoman Nancy Droneburg and former Councilwoman Deborah James filed for Place 2, where Chris Clark rejected a re-election bid.
Droneburg returned to the council via appointment to fill a Place 4 vacancy.
Colleagues voted in June to have James step down. According to reports, she missed several meetings while undergoing treatment for a heart ailment.
Marc Gilbert, former Converse Economic Development Corp. board president, was appointed to replace James in Place 6, and is opposed by Billy Ortiz.
The Place 4 candidates are Ray Garcia, a Planning and Zoning Commission member and 2017 council contender, former Councilwoman Joan Lindgren, and former EDC Executive Director Kate Silvas.
Substitute teacher Allison Heyward and clinical-education director Chelsea Skrobarcek battle to replace Place 6 Councilwoman Angelina Kiser, who didn’t file.
Skrobarcek touts efficiency and fiscal conservatism at City Hall: “I am running to stop the waste we have in this city.”
Heyward’s campaign is about raising awareness of community issues, improving communication between residents and local officials, and smart growth.
“We need elected leaders who will challenge themselves and think outside the box,” Heyward said.
Tim Brown, Schertz EDC board president, opposes Place 7 Councilman Bert Crawford, a Navy retiree.
Brown said experience as a real estate broker, business owner and EDC member “will help me make smart decisions for the citizens of Schertz and keep us moving forward with a plan.”
Voters consider three city-charter amendments proposed through a petition drive launched by the San Antonio Professional Firefighters Association Local 624.
One proposition caps future city managers at eight years of service, with the maximum salary no more than 10 times the amount earned by the lowest-paid municipal employee.
A second asks voters if all labor-contract disputes should go to binding arbitration, instead of court proceedings.
The third would lower the threshold for petition signatures to 20,000 registered voters and increase the collection period from 40 to 180 days, as well as allow residents to approve or nix City Council decisions on utility rates, funding allotments and taxation.
Voter-registration deadline is Oct. 9; early voting is Oct. 22-Nov. 2.