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ELECTION 2020: Corpus Christi Mayor's race

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Posted at 1:21 AM, Oct 08, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-16 23:44:08-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Here are candidates running for Corpus Christi mayor in this year's election. They are ordered by official ballot order that was determined by random draw by city officials. Empty bios can and will be filled when the answers to our questionnaires are sent back to us by the candidate. Minor edits have been made for clarity.

Watch the 2020 Mayoral Debate/Forum here.

PANCHO VILLA

What is your age?

(no answer received yet)

What is your current or past occupation?

(no answer received yet)

What relevant experience can you bring to the office?

(no answer received yet)

How has life prepared you for this position?

(no answer received yet)

What problems would you address on your first day in office?

(no answer received yet)

What long-term issues will need to be addressed throughout your time in office?

(no answer received yet)

What is the City of Corpus Christi doing well right now that needs to be expanded further?

(no answer received yet)

ERIC RODRIGUEZ

What is your age?

32

What is your current or past occupation?

NAVFAC, environmental management and compliance. American Federation of Government Employees L1005, NAVFAC president.

What relevant experience can you bring to office?

The most important thing about being a mayor is having a character that has no special interest and is in it for the people. I believe my experience as a leader in many organizations such as AFGE, Sierra Club, Nueces County delegate, Big Brothers Big Sisters and Texas World Affairs Council gives me the experience to work constructively with a number of different people. Alongside my working experience in negotiations and contract management for the last 12 years working for the DOD.

How has life prepared you for this position?

As a single father, my 11-year-old daughter is my driving force for everything I do. Bailey is the reason I cherish the future of Corpus Christi so much. Our city needs a change in leadership, and that change must start at the top. That is why I decided to run for Corpus Christi mayor.

What problems would you address on your first day in office?

Given the current outlook for COVID-19 and the lack of readiness, the city currently has a disaster plan for hurricanes only. The first day, I would start two separate task forces to create a pandemic plan and develop an industrial accident response plan.

What long-term issues will need to be addressed throughout your time in office?

I would focus on generating more revenue from industry and developers, and make industry pay its fair share. Making comprehensive decisions on future water sources, and agreeing on a schedule to contract and implement the upgrades on our sewer and stormwater sewer systems. Creating long-term mapping to meet our infrastructure needs in a way that's cost effective.

What is the City of Corpus Christi doing well right now that needs to be expanded further?

The street reconstruction program made a lot of progress, that's due to the people on council two councils ago. We need to combine that strategy with a cost effective construction plan for our sewer and stormwater needs.

CAROLYN VAUGHN

What is your age?

67

What is your current or past occupation?

I am currently your County Commissioner for Precinct 1 in Nueces County, and I will complete my term at the end of this year. My husband and I also run a successful oil-field service company.

What relevant experience can you bring to the office?

Having run an oilfield-service company, I understand how a business operates and the value of a dollar. I also understand how important it is to have a budget and stick to it. Serving on the city council in the past has been very valuable as well; I already understand how the city runs and operates.

My time serving as a county commissioner gives me a different perspective on the city and county. This experience will help me in the office of mayor because it is so vital to work together with our partners in the city and the region.

How has life prepared you for this position?

Growing up with a family of 8 children, raised by a single mom, I learned the value of a dollar quickly.

Working in the school cafeteria for my lunch taught me to be humble. I quit school in the 10th grade to take care of my brother, who had muscular dystrophy. Sadly, he passed away just a year later. Taking care of him taught me compassion and caring about others.

Running a business has taught me how to manage money and to put priorities and needs first, and wants have to take a back seat.

I think all these things will help me be a good mayor as I lead this city.

What problems would you address on your first day in office?

One of the first things I would do is get a policy in place for our police officers. I’m tired of them having to beg for officers every year — public safety, number one priority.

Economic Development for all areas of the city would be at the top as well. I would assign a task force for every area of our city to address the problems and come up with suggestions and solutions just like we did with the North Beach Task Force.

I would immediately review and access the debt they are talking about with the (desalination), EPA Consent Decree and the Bond 2020. They have listed one billion (dollars) worth of debt. I would take a look at our utility costs as well.

What long-term issues will need to be addressed throughout your time in office??

Long-term issues always deal with water supply, infrastructure, and economic development. The most important thing we need to do, right away, is to deal with all the utility debt the current mayor is piling on us.

What is the City of Corpus Christi doing well right now that needs to be expanded further?

The City of Corpus Christi includes us, the taxpayers, and the citizens who pay the water bill. The best part is that the people of Corpus Christi are starting to expect more, expect to be able to attend city council meetings in person, expect a city government that does what they say they are going to do, and to keep taxes and utility rates low while doing it. How we expand that is to elect truthful, honest and ethical leadership for ALL of Corpus Christi.

PRISCILLA GONZALEZ

What is your age?

36

What is your current or past occupation?

My current occupation is supervisor of the Marketing Department at Herrman & Herrman PLLC.

What relevant experience can you bring to office?

I bring forth management, leadership, and financial expertise.

How has life prepared you for this position?

What has prepared me in life for this position are the leadership, management, and financial skills.

I have developed in my career. I grew up as a missionary. I have been serving the community my entire life, and I am ready to lead Corpus Christi into a better future.

What problems would you address on your first day in office?

On my first day in office, I would meet with the city council and make a list of issues that need immediate attention.

Which long-term issues will need to be addressed throughout your time in office?

I will improve the quality of life of every citizen of Corpus Christi by ensuring our infrastructure doesn't crumble, our streets are repaired, jobs remain, and housing remains affordable. I will ensure our children receive a proper education. Our senior citizens and veterans must no longer be overlooked, and our beloved homeless population desperately needs a long-term solution. And our furry friends need to be spayed and neutered.

What is the City of Corpus Christi doing well right now that needs to be expanded further?

CCPD, and securing bond programs.

JOE MICHAEL PEREZ

What is your age?

(no answer received yet)

What is your current or past occupation?

(no answer received yet)

What relevant experience can you bring to the office?

(no answer received yet)

How has life prepared you for this position?

(no answer received yet)

What problems would you address on your first day in office?

(no answer received yet)

What long-term issues will need to be addressed throughout your time in office??

(no answer received yet)

What is the City of Corpus Christi doing well right now that needs to be expanded further?

(no answer received yet)

ROBERTO SEIDNER

No photo submitted. No file photo.

What is your age?

(no answer received yet)

What is your current or past occupation?

(no answer received yet)

What relevant experience can you bring to the office?

(no answer received yet)

How has life prepared you for this position?

(no answer received yet)

What problems would you address on your first day in office?

(no answer received yet)

What long-term issues will need to be addressed throughout your time in office??

(no answer received yet)

What is the City of Corpus Christi doing well right now that needs to be expanded further?

(no answer received yet)

JOE MCCOMB (INCUMBENT)

What is your age? 73

What is your current or past occupation?

Own and operate McComb Relocation Services, a family-owned business established in 1940. Currently Mayor of Corpus Christi.

What relevant experience can you bring to office?

My business education and experience running my family-owned business and my public service experience:

  • 1983-1987; 1989-1993 City Councilman District 5: City of Corpus Christi
  • 1995-2002 and 2011-2014 Nueces County Commissioner Precinct Four
  • 2016 (November 8, 2016 – May 18, 2017) City Councilman, At-Large: City of Corpus Christi
  • 2017 (May 18, 2017) Elected to fill unexpired term ending November 2018 Mayor: City of Corpus Christi
  • 2018 -2020 (Current term ends November 2020) Mayor: City of Corpus Christi, Texas

How has life prepared you for this position?

  • Raising five children taught me how to budget and encouraged me to be fiscally conservative.
  • My faith instilled in me the importance of helping others.
  • My community service taught me to listen to different points of view but be definitive in decisions, so people know where you stand.
  • My parents instilled ethics in me.

What problems would you address on your first day in office?

Continue to address:

  • Improving our streets, and other infrastructure needs.
  • A dependable and uninterruptable water supply for the city and region.
  • Careful monitoring of the health challenges presented by COVID-19, while also being an advocate for business and vigilant policy maker carefully monitoring the city’s revenues.

What long-term issues will need to be addressed throughout your time in office?

Economic development (jobs) and economic revitalization – both of which depend on strengthening our water supply and infrastructure.

What is the City of Corpus Christi doing well right now that needs to be expanded further?

I believe we have made steps forward on maintenance of everything from streets to utilities to parks to city facilities, and this needs to continue. Additionally, one thing that might be expanded is engagement of the community more in public safety, along with providing more support services such as mental-health professionals to assist CCPD.

JOHN MEDINA

What is your age? 62

What is your current or past occupation?

Pipe fitter, refinery operator, painter lead, home contractor remodeling, oil movements - Port of Corpus Christi, local social media

What relevant experience can you bring to office?

First of all, I’m not bribeable. As a pipe fitter and operator of high-grade asphalt and terminal oil-movements unit, our drainage, water and road problems will be solved without studies after studies, and draining our residents and citizens of unnecessary, high taxes.

How has life prepared you for this position?

I’m a visionary, and what I’ve seen in the past 40 years, I’m not proud of this city’s past. It has a lot of potential that hasn’t been for the citizens' interest, nor the city's growth.

I'll bring to the table experience, knowledge, accountability, transparency and trustworthiness.

What problems would you address on your first day in office?

Call for a forum to present my plan to turn Corpus Christi into a smart city and a revenue-making machine that doesn’t mainly rely on taxpayers' money to get things done. Announce fixing all roads, and improving water. Take all the city's machines and equipment and parade them by cleaning alleys and streets in the city. Call for all bills being paid out to be itemized, so the common man can understand where taxpayers' money is going.

Which long-term issues will need to be addressed throughout your time in office?

The homeless, desalinization, fix roads, taxes, funding our first responders. All infrastructure.

What is the City of Corpus Christi doing well right now that needs to be expanded further?

The deepening of our port waterway for the supertankers' arrival. Our tourism and the arrival of vacation travel ships is what needs to be expanded to bring revenue into the city through tourism. The city can start with smaller vacation-travel ships, and later boost it to larger ships. Corpus Christi needs to get its feet wet and apply for grants -- orthodox and unorthodox grants -- that many other cities are applying for and receiving. Corpus Christi needs to clean this city and turn it into a smart high-tech city and start a megatrend city of microtechnology.

PAULETTE GUAJARDO

Mayor Paulette Guajardo
Corpus Christi Mayor Paulette Guajardo says plans will be announced soon for a second shelter in the works for those affected by the cold weather.

What is your age?

I am 48 years old.

What is your current or past occupation?

My current occupation is city council member at-large for City of Corpus Christi. Prior to this I was a small business owner for 15 years.

What relevant experience can you bring to office?

My two-term service as a councilwoman at-large gives me the unique qualification to be the next mayor, having already served the entire city full time for 4 years. I have always kept my word to the voters, serving my full term of office.

How has life prepared you for this position?

Being born and raised in Corpus Christi, I hold a business degree from Texas A&M University-CC, and am a former small-business owner, which gives me the experience to understand our city's need to create great jobs for our future and fix our streets.

What problems would you address on your first day in office?

My top priorities will be addressing building our economy by working with the public and private sectors to attract and create new jobs. I will also prioritize public safety by continuing to support our police department and working to hire additional officers. I will expedite fixing our city streets by supporting a residential street repair program, streets dashboard program and a new concrete street repair program.

What long term issues will need to be addressed throughout your time in office?

As mayor I will provide full-time leadership for economic growth. I will bring the necessary energy to work to create jobs, expedite fixing our streets, secure a long-term, uninterruptible water source, and enhance public safety. I would also work on quality-of-life issues for our community, including enhancing our parks, beaches, and library system.

What is the City of Corpus Christi doing well right now that needs to be expanded further?

Corpus Christi has a very good city manager in Peter Zanoni, who has worked to cut waste and provide for efficiencies in our city departments. We must continue this effort, so that our city government is working for our residents. Our budget is balanced and we have improved our credit rating with Fitch and Moody’s. As mayor, I will provide the fiscal leadership necessary so that Corpus Christi is critically poised to prioritize what our residents want to see accomplished, such as fixing our streets and improving EMS response times.

Most importantly, I believe that what Corpus Christi is doing very well is that we are united as a community and we do not have the fractures other major cities in Texas, and the nation, have. I want to see our government work together, cooperatively and continue to seek taxpayer input in all our decision-making processes.