Wow. Looks like some of you anon's are on a roll. I think one of you needs to consider upping your meds. To the rest of the readers, no need to thank me for the entertainment. Rob, you forgot to invite me to the ambush. I picked up my packet this morning. I think I'll go mow my weeds.
This from Bryan Hoerner:
1. Why are you running for this office?
To help make the council a proactive one and one that is in tune with the majority of the city’s residents.
2. What city committees have you served on in the past and when?
I served on City Council from July of 2007 until May of 2010, which triggered the start of an Era, excuse me, Error.
3. Tell us about your education and any degrees you hold.
I hold a BS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of New Orleans with a minor on common sense.
4. Do you have any professional designations, i.e. CPA, RN, etc.?
No, I do not.
5. What is your work experience?
I have worked in the Engineering and Design/Project Management field since graduation from college in 1994. Prior to that I delivered newspapers, bagged groceries, stocked shelves, ran a Produce Department, co-managed a supermarket, and worked on elevators. That last one was pretty up and down which drove me to college to get a degree.
6. Describe your most important personal characteristics or traits as they relate to the office you seek.
I take a common sense approach to things. I do not get my feelings hurt very easily. I have no problem with agreeing to disagree. I get things done. I am committed, dedicated, and dependable. I give credit when and where there is credit due.
7. Please describe one to three accomplishments or contributions of which you are most proud. These examples should illustrate skills and capabilities you think apply to the office you are seeking. These accomplishments may have occurred at any time during your personal, professional or public life.
I have always taken on an assignment and given it my all. I have always been promoted as a result of my performance and contribution, but not at the expense of others. In the grocery business I advanced from grocery bagger to Assistant Manager in 2 years. In my current line of business I advanced from mechanical designer to Project Director in 5 years.
As a City Council member I had the honor of serving on what is considered by many to be one of most cohesive and successful councils the city has ever seen, a far cry from what we are experiencing today.
I initiated the effort and worked on the team that eventually led to the city purchasing the property it currently owns on FM2094. That was no easy task and it many long hours and teamwork by a number of people to make that happen. I was also on the team that worked with the architects to develop the original Town Center Plan.
Lastly, along with my wonderful wife Diana, we started the Annual Island Wide Garage Sale about 7 years ago, a Civic Club sponsored event which we still organize to this day.
8. Please describe the duties of the office you seek, in your own words. Which are the most important duties and why?
Attempting to understand the city’s and resident’s needs is a big part of the job. Also, understanding that you will never please everyone, but that does not mean you turn your back on the opposition. An example of that is the Scope Reduction Committee I created and chaired when we reached an impasse on the amount of money the EDC was attempting to borrow. One side wanted to borrow nothing, one side wanted to borrow a much larger amount. The committee was an attempt to agree on a middle ground. Even though the members of the opposition never did act in good faith and refused to back the majority decision of the committee it was still an example of attempting to work together despite differing opinions. This is very important as it helps keep the community together. Divisiveness is not a tool, even though a certain faction of the city seems to think so.
Obviously, city council also has fiscal responsibility. We really need to get a handle on that, regardless of the outcome of the election, and get the budget back in line.
9. What are the City’s strengths? What are its weaknesses?
The city’s main strength is its people. To this day I can make a few phone calls if I need some help and within 30 minutes I will have a yard full of golf carts carrying volunteers. The fundraisers/benefits we have had are also evidence of that. No matter how hard certain factions try to disrupt that it will never end, in my opinion. The community spirit of CLS is an eternal one.
The only real weakness, in my opinion, is the refusal of the old guard to compromise, sometimes using lies and deceit to promote their agenda. Remember the “Don’t Let Them Raise Your Taxes, Vote No to the Town Center” signs? There seems to be a sense that new people and/or people with proactive ideas always have ulterior motives. They just can’t seem to grasp the idea that we love this city as much as they do even if we have not put in the years here that they have. There are a lot of people in this neighborhood with ideas and opinions that come from the heart, but their motives are questioned and they run the risk of their reputations being tarnished. That keeps many of them from getting involved, unfortunately. It does not bother me, fire away.
11. Do you think Clear Lake Shores is a well-run city? Why or why not?
Even though the city staff has been thoroughly demoralized by the current Council and by a certain faction of residents, I think it is still well run. Part of my mantra at work is that we, as managers, need to do everything we can to develop an environment for our people to be successful. I do not think the current Council does that, and we need to focus on that. In other words, I think the current staff is doing the best they can given the current situation and negative environment, and I am very thankful they have stayed around and weathered the storm. It is admirable, in my opinion. I know they hope, as do many of us, that the upcoming election will bring blue skies to all of us. Well, to most of us, anyway.
12. Where do you see Clear Lake Shores in five years and what role would you play to get it there?
I think the CLS will always be a great place being a great place to live and raise a family. I think the sense of community will always be there despite a handful of negative people that will likely always be around as they tend to add new members to the club every election year. One thing we really need to do is clean up the entrance and add small businesses within the Town Center footprint that will enhance the quality of life of our residents.
The role I will play to get there is to find ways to get out overall budget back under control and support the EDC 100%. From what I can tell our sales tax revenues are back where they were pre-Ike, yet we are budgeting a deficit this year? What does that not seem to bother anyone? It was stated at a recent meeting that the Public Works budget has increased over 100% since last year? Why? It was also stated that cost cutting measures may need to be taken (you think?) but a couple of options mentioned were eliminating the Property Tax Relief and the free Trash Pick-Up. Can we maybe get a little more creative than that? Why we we also to afford those thing 2 years ago and still run a budget surplus?
I also think we should once again look for financing opportunities that will allow the development of the Town Center to actually progress. “Pay as you go” was a concept sold to a majority of voters 2 years ago through lies and rumors. Well, look where it has gotten us. Due to limited funding and lack of support by the current Council we are struggling to even get a tree in the ground, through no fault of the EDC. I think we should all be thankful folks like Ronnie Richards have stayed involved and remained dedicated as long as they have, especially given the deplorable current state of Council.
I will also work outside of the normal meeting hours to look for opportunities to enhance the city and the resident’s lifestyles. Being a council member requires more than showing up twice a month for a meeting. As I mentioned earlier, I had the honor of serving on a very proactive, creative, and successful council. Our record speaks for itself. On the flip side, a quick run through the Meeting Minutes from the least 2 years shows a vastly different story. There were an embarrassingly few number of “New Business” agenda items submitted that did not deal with the police department investigation. I’m not sure if Councilman Fuller has ever sponsored an agenda item in 2 years other than the ones he tags along on. He recently said he disagreed with the ordinance dealing with trash and rubbish on vacant lots. Well, 2 years should have been more than an adequate amount of time to lead the effort to revise it. It is a little late now, though.
Let’s get back to answering the original question. I will be a proactive Council Member. Not everything I do will be supported by the majority but I will always do what I truly feel is in the best interest of the city and its residents. And I will never sit back and ride out my term. I will resign if I ever get to the point when I feel I am not contributing something.
13. If elected, how would you handle a constituent's call to complain about a matter?
A return call or e-mail ASAP, with a face to face meeting if necessary. Simple common sense – communicate with the people who elected you. To ignore them is reprehensible and terribly immature.
However, I will not respond directly to an Anonymous complaint. If I feel the complaint is legitimate and needs to be addressed then I will respond to the residents as a whole.
14. What issues would you like to see the council address?
Rapid development of the Town Center
Budget reductions and growth of the Rainy Day Fund
Improved operational procedures for the city and police department
Repair of our reputation (which has been tarnished terribly over the last 2 years)
And last but not least…….Reinstatement of the Jammin’ on Jarboe original budget (will you still vote for me Roselyn?)
15. Please list your top three to five priorities you will champion to move the city forward.
Rapid development of the Town Center
Budget reductions and growth of the Rainy Day Fund
Full support of the EDC
Improved communication between Council and residents
16. Describe how you plan to implement your top three priorities. (50 words or less)
Work with EDC to develop a more aggressive plan for Town Center development. Take another shot at EDC obtaining financing for the project as I think if that same vote were held today the financing piece would pass with flying colors. Reinstate Council liaisons to Committees and rejuvenate them. Get new residents involved on Committees. Consider some third part help with budget review and budget streamlining.
17. What would you like to change about the council?
Get back to the days when we worked together and shared a vision. We will never all agree, but that does not make anyone right and anyone wrong. I also think each Council Member should establish and broadcast their 2 or 3 top priorities and report on progress toward those ends at every meeting. Saying “Nothing” at the beginning of every meeting for 2 years when the Mayor asks Council if they have anything to report is not acceptable.
18. What would you like to stay the same about the council?
That does not mean I would not support the two standing members that will continue on. They deserve their seat and an opportunity to work in a better environment.
By “nothing” I mean none of the inter-workings that exist now. There basically are none to begin with.
19. What in your view is the relationship between the Mayor and City Council? What is the main function of each, and where are certain responsibilities shared?
The relationship needs to be a working one and an amicable one. As I already stated – we will never all agree. However, it is both the Mayor’s responsibility and every Alderman’s responsibility to not hold grudges and not let losing on a position influence whether or not you support the next one.
The mayor functions as the chief elected official of the city and is responsible for representing the city and has responsibility for the general public relations of the city. The mayor acts as the presiding officer at all regular and special council meetings. The mayor signs on behalf of the city. In the event the city is operating with an even number of councilmen the mayor may vote to break a tie vote on motions.
City Councilmembers are the city’s legislators and are responsible for policymaking. This includes identify the needs of residents. Other responsibilities include monitoring the effectiveness of municipal services and other programs within the city.
20. How do you propose to create a positive working relationship?
By being a mature adult.
21. Is there anything else you would like our residents to know about your candidacy?
Here is a cartoon my WIFE gave me from PINTREST! This is me turning on CAPS lock. IT IS NOT POLITICALLY CORRECT AND I DONT CARE IF YOU DONT LIKE IT.
But it is a clear copyright violation by whoever made it. ab