Stephanie Bazan Is Top Choice In District 5 Runoff

By Bill Oakey, December 11, 2022

The City Council runoff election is almost here. I’m excited to have this late opportunity to recommend Stephanie Bazan for District 5. As a native South Austinite, with an impressive record of leadership, education and civic engagement, she’s ready to hit the ground running on the City Council.

What Word Stands Out When You Click “Issues” On Her Website?

Affordability…!

It’s right at the top in bold print. I haven’t seen that in any of the other campaigns. At the end, I will provide a YouTube link, where she will tell you with passion and enthusiasm where she stands. But I want to highlight a few quick things. She repeatedly says that Austinites should be able to afford to stay in their homes.

People at City Hall talk about affordability all the time. But not nearly enough is being done. We need a fresh voice who lives every day among people who actually feel the lack of affordability – like renters, homeowners with high property taxes, artists and musicians and all kinds of small businesses.

A Few Concrete Examples

I submitted three questions to Stephanie. Before answering them, she offered this encouraging comment, “In order to keep pace with growth, we should continue to raise the senior and disabled tax exemptionIt’s also important to manage the budget to keep property taxes and fees low.” Here are the questions and her responses:

1. Can you support senior discounts on the monthly service charges on our utility bills – such as electric, water, wastewater and solid waste? We should keep electric and water bills as low as possible and avoid rate hikes. I would be in support of viable options to support seniors, including discounts. 
 
2. Will you consider supporting senior discounts on other City services, such as admission fees and parking fees at City-owned facilities? I would consider supporting senior discounts on other City services. 
 
3. In 2014, I asked the City Council to appoint a Regional Affordability Committee, and develop an affordability action plan. They did appoint the committee. It met from early 2015 until March 2020. Then, they abruptly canceled all future meetings because of the pandemic. They published a draft Affordability Strategic Plan. But the plan was never adopted by the City Council. Would you support having the new Council review the work of the Committee, and consider adopting the Strategic Plan?
 
I would be open to having the new Council review the work and consider adopting the plan. I would like to get more background on why the plan was not originally adopted, but appreciate the work of the committee.

A Closing Poem

This is a busy time of year, lots of things are going on
But if you live in District 5, make some time for Stephanie Bazan
Mark your calendar for Tuesday’s election
And make sure that Stephanie is your selection

Head over to her website, it’s not to be missed
You’ll find affordability at the top of her list!
One thing you should do without hesitation
Is click that button and make a donation

Check out Stephanie’s impressive YouTube video:

Stephanie Bazan

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