District 2 candidates weigh in on plans to deal with community issues

By Deven Clarke - Crime and Justice Reporter, Adam B. Higgins - Photojournalist

SAN ANTONIO - Several District 2 council member candidates weighed in on issues and offered solutions for the communities they hope to serve.

Tuesday was the last day for early voting in the city elections.

Denise Gutierrez-Homer said she's been a District 2 resident for a little over nine years and works as an artist. She said business and resident displacement is the biggest issue, and, if elected, she vows to keep an eye on property taxes and reassess appraisals.

“We have to make sure that we have an opportunity for them to find housing, make sure that we respect their housing. We know we're growing. We know we have a future in that area, but we have to have responsible development,” Gutierrez-Homer said.

Your Questions Answered: San Antonio City Council District 2 candidates

East Side native Walter E. Perry Sr. said he's lived in District 2 for 30 years and is an entrepreneur. He said a lack of resources and the district not being united is what's plaguing the area most.

“This neighborhood is trying to take these resources. This neighborhood is complaining about these resources. Our biggest thing is that we're not united as a district. My biggest job is going to be to go to the neighborhoods, go to these neighborhood associations, and unite these people,” Perry said.

Vietnam veteran and retiree Keith Toney said he's lived in the district for 15 years and feels root causes of crime, such as hopelessness and poverty, are the biggest issues. He wants to challenge developers to offer job training in areas that need it most.

“What you're going to do with that is you're going to take this workforce, this demographic that we have here ready to go, and you're going to teach them to do pipe-fitting, electrical, the trades,” Toney said.

Small business owner Salena Santibanez Guipzot said she’s lived in the district for about 20 years. She believes unaffordable housing is the biggest issue.

“With the most vulnerable population, homelessness, I serve on the board of SARAH, San Antonio Regional Alliance of the Homeless, so I come with a lot of access and resources," she said.

Military veteran Jada Andrews-Sullivan is an entrepreneur who said she’s lived in District 2 for 43 years and wants to ensure families can leave legacies.

“A lot of families are being displaced by rising property taxes, and so for me, it's actually making sure we have that true homestead exemption put in place for those that are younger than 65, that are coming into the district, so that they won’t be displaced by the rise in property taxes.”

KSAT gave all the candidates a chance to answer questions from constituents. Click here to read their responses. 

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