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Mayoral Candidate Questionnaire_Irma Rosas Irma Rosas Mayoral Candidate City Council and Mayoral Candidate Questionnaire Name

as it will appear on ballot: Irma Rosas Current employment (if retired, please describe your previous career):

I have a B.A. in Political Science and Spanish, an M.A. in Linguistics, and a M.Ed. in Bilingual Education from the University of IL, Chicago. I am currently a Doctoral Candidate in Education with an emphasis in Mexican American Studies at UTSA. I have classroom teaching experience from Kindergarten to the university level. 50-word bio: I was born and raised in Chicago. Before coming to S.A., I was a member of the Chicago Teachers Union. Fierce! Imagine a city where all students and teachers are really happy to go to school/university and/or work because teachers/professors, parents, and communities are united. I want that for all of us. 50 word reason for becoming a candidate in this election: All levels of public education are being privatized. Politicians are converting the public K-12 system into charter schools such as PreK 4 SA instead of fixing a broken system with a continual high number of dropout and illiteracy rates. Problems should be addressed, not avoided. 1) Could the Citys recent ethics reforms be better enforced, especially in terms of conflicts of interest? Absolutely! Conflicts of interest to many city council members and administrators are like candies to children, those that are artificially-colored and with high fructose (corn) syrup. No matter how unhealthy they are, they want more, they want more. Having said this, I am not convinced that the solution to conflicts of interests will be solved with an ethics auditor as proposed by Julian Castro. He, city council, and the administration have failed to follow-through with many entities conducting business with the city and their contractual responsibilities (i.e. Toyota, Grand Hyatt). Corporations like them promise to create jobs so they receive MILLIONS of dollars in tax abatements. In other words, they do not have to pay taxes. What Castro and Sheryl Sculley are simply doing is creating the illusion that government is working for the peoplein an attempt to rectify the Pat DiGiovanni-Zachry Construction fiasco. Back door dealing points to

Mayoral Candidate Questionnaire_Irma Rosas how many of them work for corporations while we, the people whom they are supposed to working for, continue to pay more and more taxes. Got taxation without representation?

Something that we need to address is how Sheryl Sculley, the appointed city manager, can have more power than elected officials. Indeed, Castro and city council members appoint the city manager but it is the city manager who tells them what to do. I say this because last year I had the opportunity to scrutinizelike the trained ethno-political linguist I amall the presentations related to the Proposed Budget for FY 2013. Here is a summary of what happened in a Session B meeting: There was no indication that Castro and council members had fully read their 2inch thick, bounded copy of the proposed budget. There was one exception. The other ten members were reading the condensed version of the budget via the PowerPoint handouts for the first time, so it seemed, on the day of the presentations. When some of them had questions, Sculley didnt have the answers the majority of the times. Maria Villagmez, the Budget Director, provided them. Read between the lines here. Further, when one member asked to have the financial aspect of the Henry B. Gonzlez Convention Center reevaluatedthink Pat DiGiovanni and Zachry Construction fiascoSculley said there was no time and that it would be very costly. Read between the lines here. I would like to say that Castro and city council members have no back bone but that would be harsh. I will say, however, that Castro and city council members are very divided. Can you imagine had the other ten members agreed on reevaluating the convention center? Instead, council members said nothing. Why would they? Their focus is primarily on their own districts and their self-interests. There should be no self in public government. If someone is serious about being a public-elected official, then that office should be her or his ONLY job and it should be clear for whom she/he is working. So in order for this to happen, the Mayor and council members should be salariedemployees. The benefits to providing salaries would promote attendance, alleviate distractions to actually do the job that they were elected to do, and especially to work with and for their constituents. Otherwise, their work is only an extra-curricular activity, which is unacceptable. This is a start. Another thing is to work with council members by holding one another accountable to each other and the residents of San Antonio. It will be even clearer once you read more of my responses to these questions that I have no qualms outing the real unethical practices and their authors. We need to put the public back in public government. 2.) Whats your opinion on encouraging economic development and civic programming via public/private partnerships, especially where public land, such as Hemisfair Park, is concerned?

Mayoral Candidate Questionnaire_Irma Rosas

Historically, HemisFair Park was a product of the Worlds Fair held in San Antonio in 1968. About ninety-two acres of land and 129 buildings were acquired for the Fair through eminent domain and the construction of the Fair was financed using public and private funds. About $46 million from local, state, and federal governments were used to fund the Fair. The residents of San Antonio contributed $16.5 million for the construction of the key structures (i.e. convention center, Tower of the Americas). And what do you know, Henry B. Zachry, a prominent downtown construction magnate happened to be the chairman of the board on San Antonio Fair Inc. The reader need not know be a rocket scientist to know who received the construction bid for HemisFair. Today, Zachry Construction is the local construction company that continually gets awarded the most expensive contracts in the city. The convention center project will cost us $300 million because Sheryl Sculley said so! (See answer to previous answer.) During the Worlds Fair, residents of San Antonio invested $16.5 million into a project that had $7.5 million in losses. In addition, many people lost their homes to a project that only created temporary jobs. The private corporations got a return on their investments especially with the publicity they received on an international level. Private corporations come to San Antonio, get what they want, and leave. Metaphorically, city government PIMPS US over and over again. They dont care about us; many of them only care about themselves and their business interests. And until we make our voice heard in multiple ways, they will continue to pimp us over and over and over again. Gosh, I wish I could stop writing but I have so much to say. As a writer it would be great to have stopped at over and over and over again because it can leave the reader in deep thought. But I have decided to add just one more layer to leave you thinking just a little more. Consider the AT&T Center, home of the San Antonio Spurs. The taxpayers of San Antonio paid to have that multimillion-dollar sports arena built so that Peter Holts San Antonio Spurswhich he purchased in 1993could play there. His current net worth is $80 Million so it follows that in the year 2000, he had more than enough money to finance his own stadium. Yet it was the residents of San Antonio who paid to have it built so that we can pay to go see the Spurs play. Residents paid so they can go pay again! Also, if residents of San Antonio paid for it, should it be named the San Antonio Sports Arena? Last, could the Spurs have made the Alamodome their home? That Alamodome, it reminds me of Downton Abbeyso huge and expensive for U.S.-born Clara Melvina White to upkeep for her British husband. In case of the Alamodome, taxpayers are the ones who maintain it. I wonder how much energy must be guzzled for events that are few and far between. 3.) Should the city establish an independent police monitor to better oversee the San Antonio Police Department? Why or why not? No. To establish an independent police monitor would only add to an already increasing budget for the San Antonio Police Department and most importantly remove the accountability that the SAPD has to the residents of the San Antonio. Accountability should be directly maintained with the Department and instances of wrongdoing by anyone in the department need to be made public and rectified immediately.

Mayoral Candidate Questionnaire_Irma Rosas

Unfortunately, not all incidents are made public. I have three negative experiences that center around the use and misuse of traffic signs; two of these experiences were encounters with traffic motorcycle cops. I contested the traffic ticket in San Antonio, so I know how these cases are handled from the inside. I oppose the One Witness Rule used in Texas because anyone can be found guilty based on the testimony of ONE PERSON. In my case, it was the traffic cop who, although did not provide a printout of the speed I was traveling and could not say with certainty that his radar in his motorcycle was calibrated, was able to prove his case based solely on his testimony. This is similar to how I just attended Jury Duty a few days ago. There has to be a better way to about Jury Duty in San Antonio. The day was so long and by the time others and I were selected, many people were moody and disinterested. This does not help the defendant who by the most part wants jurors to be engaged and on-task. These things have to change. One almost has to wonder if this is done intentionally so that another body can fill Bexar County Jail. Can you imagine if there were no criminals? What would happen to the buildings? What would happen to people and their jobs at this facility? Things have to change. 4.) Do you support the way the health department currently regulates food trucks? If not, how could the regulations be changed to better serve San Antonians? Deep breath. It is important to assure that businesses selling food products be regulated by the health department. When it is evident that the health department is not regulating places of business that provide or sell food, how can we expect it to regulate those on four wheels? The reader should be thinking of all the restaurants that fail their health inspections now. Currently there are 35 food inspectors who service all the restaurants in the city. Valerie at S.A. Metropolitan Health has informed me they inspect places of business that handle any type of food based on three risk categories: Category 1: Businesses that handle prepackaged foods, Category 2: Businesses such as convenient stores and other businesses that sell prepared foods such as the Subways, etc., and Category 3: Businesses that handle raw product such as meats. While Category 1 and 2 businesses are inspected less often, those in Category 3 are inspected every 3-4 months. It would seem that if restaurants are failing their health inspections that the 35 health inspectors available are not enough for the entire city. Moreover, inspections should take place more frequently than every 3-4 months. Health inspections should be more frequent and the necessary inspectors should be hired. Did you know that the City of San Antonio does not inspect the meat processing, meatpacking businesses scattered throughout the city? According to Valerie, they are the States responsibility. Not only do these businesses handle the most hazardous food product (meat), the unwanted animal remains (i.e. blood) go into our sewer system. I

Mayoral Candidate Questionnaire_Irma Rosas believe inspections of this kind should also be conducted at the local level and this is the second reason why we need more health inspectors.

We even need a few inspectors at the San Antonio Water System because they too are not assuring that New Earth Soils and Compost are fulfilling the requirements of their contract. According to documents I obtained through an open records request on March 29, 2013, the compost submitted by New Earth to Midwest Laboratories, Inc. on 7/13/2010 revealed that New Earth failed to control for FECAL COLIFORM and therefore FAILED the analysis. Fecal coliform is, according to the Environmental Protection Agency, bacteria associated with human or animal wastes and Escherichia coli (E. coli) is part of the group of fecal coliforms. SAWS did nothing to address this issue, at least according to all the paperwork that I requested. Then New Earth sells this compost is sold at H-E-B and it is also the compost used in places like UTSA, La Cantera Mall, and the River Walk. According to the contract, the compost needs to adhere to safety standards before it is sold. However, since New Earth began business with SAWS there are several gaps where New Earth has NOT submitted the analyses on a monthly basis. No one at SAWS is keeping track or even reading the analyses because all these services which by the way are supposed to be conducted by SAWS as delineated in the contract but are notare instead being outsourced to Nebraska, California, and most recently to South Texas. This while we are paying our very own environmental scientist who instead of working for us, is instead logging the amount of methane gas for Ameresco, Inc. on a daily basis. Even the gas that our fecal matter produces is being sold to third parties! Back to the compost, many of us walk on it and then walkshoes and allinto our homes and onto the same floor/carpet where our children play with their toys. This is unac-cep-table!!! 5.) How can the City support sustainable transportation options? According to documents registered with the Bexar County Clerks office, VIA Metropolitan Transit became a business managed by John M. Milam on January 5, 1999. Public transportation became a private enterprise. Years before in 1977, however, the residents of the City of San Antonio approved the levying of a one-half cent sales taxes to finance the purchase of transit system assets form the City of San Antonio in order to begin operations. The transit system belonged to the City. Then again in 2004, the residents of the City of San Antonio approved a quarter-cent sales tax to fund transportation improvement projects. The reader is asked to question how much millions of dollars of financing VIA already receives from the State and from the Federal Government. Besides levying sales taxes, there have also been several fare increases. The most recent fare increase was on March 1, 2013, an increase that comes after VIA initiated the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) and its purchase of high-capacity buses called VIA Primo. Logic indicates that the fare increases are ONE way to finance these new buses.

Mayoral Candidate Questionnaire_Irma Rosas

This past January, I planned to verify what these new buses were all about. I bought a monthly pass for February and off I went to explore some more. I found out more than I anticipated but for sake of the question, I will focus, focus, focus. I rode the high-capacity PRIMO buses and I also rode the EXPRESS buses and REGULAR buses many times for their ENTIRE routes. I found that the service provided by the PRIMO buses IS THE SAME as the service provided by the EXPRESS buses. Moreover, there were never any passengers left standing in the PRIMO buses, which leads me to question the real need for the high-capacity buses. The number of passengers traveling from south of the City to the north of the City is low and those traveling in the opposite direction are even less. I also found how the majority of the bus stops for VIA PRIMO have lavish canopies to protect the passengers from the elements of nature while they wait for the bus. This leads me to question the need for such lavishness and when the city will address the need for canopies at ALL bus stops throughout the city. There is nothing sustainable about transportation in San Antonio. Now VIA will have the residents of the City of San Antonio finance $40 Million out of the projected total cost of $180 Million for the VIA Streetcar Project. Didnt we vote to reject this project? Even when we vote against projects, Castro and city council members IGNORE us. We need representatives who will listen to their constituents, like for reals! We also need to start taking public property out of the hands of private individuals/corporations and instead start branding the City of San Antonios Official Seal. 6.) What value do you think the arts bring to San Antonio? In what ways can the City support local arts organizations and individual artists? I will always hold a special place in my heart for the arts, always. Because of the hardships placed on me both at school and at home as a child, I would find solace in the arts. I would play tiendita, and my mamas jar of pennies became the multiple denominations of coins that I needed to carry out my business ventures with my makebelieve customers. Arts and crafts especially knitting and sewing outfits for my dolls became common practice as I listened to music and sang. Like right now, I have to listen to music while I write this. So had I had the opportunity to learn through the artsin addition to my Mexican culture and Spanish languagemy early schooling experiences would have been positive. After having learned the value of the arts on my own, it was only natural that I incorporated them into my teaching. Readers theatre, drawing, painting, and so on were part of my curriculum. Unfortunately, they were not always permissible given the priority of standardized testing. Instead, the PRIORITY should be to incorporate the teaching and learning of cultures and languages through the arts. I would like to learn more about my cultures. In my case, that would be the Indigenous, Spanish, and African cultures. My first name is German so I would like to learn more about the German presence in Mexico and San Antonio. I would love for my younger brothers children to learn their Puerto Rican heritage too. If my older brother and his

Mayoral Candidate Questionnaire_Irma Rosas

wife ever have children, I would love for them to also learn about their Irish and Polish heritages. My cousin is married to someone of Chinese ancestry and they live somewhere in New York. I have not seen him since I was very young so if they had any children, they must be in their thirties now and with children of their own. So you see, I also want to learn more about the Chinese culture. Everyone deserves the opportunity to learn their heritage(s) and those of others. I believe this is how many intercultural miscommunication can be alleviated. It is also the best way to learn and the arts are instrumental. In the time that I have lived in San Antonio, I have had the pleasure of meeting so many artists. Artists of paint, artists of song, artists of music, artists of drama, artists of needles, artists of healing, artists of the earth, artists of cooking, artists of the word. [This is an intentional fragment.] And from all of them, I have also had the opportunity to learn. I have learned at their organizations throughout communities in San Antonio. I have experienced the great work that they do on a first-hand basis. Regrettably, these great organizations are not funded or are underfunded by city government. These decisions should not be in the hands of the Sheryl Sculley, the City Manager, who is ultimately the one who decides what organizations receive public funds, not the elected officials or the community. Since I attended all the presentations for the City Budget for FY 2013, I witnessed several things. One example was how many city-funded organizations received low performance scores for FY 2012 yet they were in the budget to receive more funding for FY 2013. Does this make sense? So these low-performing organizations are currently funded. When one of the council members questioned this fact, the City Manager said nothing. Nothing. She provided no explanation. So while this is happening, many organizations, as I have already said, are doing great work in the community but yet are not funded or are underfunded. As a result these organization resort to other measures to obtain and/or keep their funding which oftentimes includes funding from the private sector. With this, the private sector brands organizations in such a way that places them in the forefront of the organizations efforts and gets free publicity in the process. Not only should they receive funding, artists, and parents, should also be allowed to establish relationships with teachers and students in schools and partake in the educational experience. We need the arts back in our schools! Unless we bring the arts back into classrooms, students will continue to find ways to express their creativity. One such example is the amount of graffiti in our neighborhoods. While I consider graffiti an artistic expression, many people consider it an act of vandalism. When someone tags an open space, she or he is communicating their need for an outlet of her or his creative expression. Think about it. There is no art in schools and if there is, it is one that does not connect with students culture(s). Add to that is how many

Mayoral Candidate Questionnaire_Irma Rosas museums in the city do not reflect the artistic expressions of all communities throughout the city. Graffiti artists seek canvasses and the audiences that they do not have for their art. Unless there is a motion for a meaningful inclusion of art in our schools, our youth will continue to express themselves in any way they can. And unless this happens, I will continue to think that the city prefers to criminalize our youth so they can also fill the Bexar Juvenile Detention Center. Can you imagine if there were no juvenile delinquents? What would happen to the buildings? What would happen to people and their jobs at this facility? This is un-ac-cep-ta-ble. 7.) Is it important for the City to strengthen its non-discrimination ordinances to protect LGBT citizens? Why or why not?

As a Chicana/Tejana/Latina Lesbian, what the city currently has does not protect me. The city needs to strengthen its non-discrimination ordinances to prohibit all employers that do business in the City of San Antonio from discriminating on the basis of gender identity, gender expression, and sexual orientation. I previously mentioned that I hold three advanced degrees and that I am currently a doctoral candidate at UTSA and I have teaching experience from Kindergarten to the university level. However much formal education and experience I have, I have never felt comfortable coming-out as Lesbian at the schools/universities where I have worked both in Chicago and in San Antonio. Fear has always been the reason. For fear of being wrongfully labeled as a sexual deviant, I have worked in the closet. I know that there are many teachers/professors of the LGBTQI community who find themselves in the same situation. We are qualified to teach your children but not as FULL citizens/residents. In addition to prohibiting all employers that do business in the City of San Antonio, I would vote to adopt an ordinance that extends to protecting the employees in all the independent school districts, community colleges, and universities. I am reminded of Rita Urquijo-Ruiz, my ex-partner, who came to the United States to be a live-in nanny at the age of 16 and to learn English. When her living situation changed before she learned it, however, Mr. Eugene Porter, her high school math teacher and his family adopted her. Because of him, she finished high school and became a legal resident. No one dare tell me that all European-Americans are like the ones playing power politics in Washington, D.C., because they are not! She earned her doctorate degree from the University of California-Riverside years later. When she was hired to teach Spanish and Spanish literature in the Modern Literatures Department at Trinity University, she moved from Los Angeles and I moved from Chicago and we began our lives together. I began teaching at Northeast I.S.D., later at Harlandale I.S.D., and finally Austin I.S.D. I owe Rita my thanks for many reasons but especially for exposing me to Chican@/Latin@ literature and for helping me expand my Spanish vocabulary. A once undocumented immigrant helped me, a citizen of the U.S., to love literature for the very first time and learn more Spanishsomething that the educational system of the country where I was born was legally responsible for doing! Unfortunately all the stressors in our lives made us part in 2010.

Mayoral Candidate Questionnaire_Irma Rosas

So no one dare tell me that immigrants have no place in the U.S. or that immigrants and U.S. citizens cannot love each other! So you see, to include protections for the LGBTQI community would require me to also consider an ordinance that includes LEGAL STATUS. All the undocumented nannies, housekeepers, and caretakers in private homes, like the undocumented workers throughout the city must also be protected from employer abuse. Besides undocumented and/or LGBTQI individuals, administrators within school districts and universities also verbally abuse and/or harass many teachers/educators and students because of our POLITICS. So an adherence to the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution must also be made real. Also my friends in the Sikh and Muslim communities should also be able to wear their turbans and burkas without harassment from anybody. I believe that the best route for the City of San Antonio will be to become a sanctuary city, a city free of abuse because of real or perceived race, color, ethnicity, national origin, age, sex, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, marital or family status, religion, ability, veterans status, legal status, and politics. 8.) Is Animal Care Services doing enough to increase its live-release rate? Is ACS' publicprivate partnership model is working? If not, what else could be done? I will base my response on the presentation given by Joe Angelo to Castro and city council members on August 29, 2012 as part of the FY 2013 Proposed Budget Worksessions. In particular, I will use the data from PowerPoint handout that I received. Reviewing ACS budget history, the department has increasingly received additional funding on a year-to-year basis. The exception is FY 2010 where it received $7.5 Million, a drop in funding but not substantial as compared to other years. With all this funding, I believe we, the taxpayers of San Antonio, can afford to buy all stray dogs and cats a condominium of their own. For FY 2013, it was proposed that ACS receive $10.9 Million, an increase of fifteen percent as compared to FYs 2006-2012. In regards to live-release rates, I cannot focus on live-release given the number of animals who are euthanized. So I will focus on that information. Angelo presented that an estimated 14,867 animals would be euthanized in FY 2012. According to the data, this is a difference of 4,089 during FY 2011. However, keep in mind that the number for FY 2012 is only an estimate given that the budget was presented in August, 2012. I have been unable to obtain the actual numbers for FY 2012, perhaps they will be made available in August of this year. As presented, however, the number of euthanized animals looked promising but that four more months remained, the numbers for FY 2012 were likely the same as FY 2011.

Mayoral Candidate Questionnaire_Irma Rosas 10 For FY 2013, Castro and council members approved an animal care facility near Brackenridge Park. According to the PowerPoint handout from August 28th, the facility will include an adoption center, pavilion, and spay/neuter clinic with an annual capacity for 3,000-4,000 animals. It was originally funded at $1.8 Million, then $2.1 Million was added in FY 2012, and an additional $1.5 Million was allocated for FY 2013 for a grand total of $5.4 Million. Funding for construction almost tripled from its original conception. Petco Corporation and Foundation donated $1 Million to the project. The Adoption Center will be named after Paul Jolly, a life-long animal advocate and Petco Foundation executive and the Clinic and Pavilion will be named after Petco. I find it disturbing that while the residents of San Antonio have paid $5.4 Million for this facility, Petco has only contributed $1 Million, yet Petco will have LIFE-LONG advertising for FREE. If we consider this project as a stock option, then the residents of San Antonio hold the majority of the stock! Again, we need to take control of the projects that we fund and brand our City Seal. Most importantly, we need to take control of how Castro, council members, and the administration fund projects like this. Is this in the name of SA2020? How many organizations already receive funding from the city to address the needs that this new facility will provide? Dont they already have their own buildings? Wouldnt it make more sense to fund those organizations already making a difference? Instead, we have a load of NON-SENSE with their addiction to development. They want more, they want more! We need to send Castro, council members, and the administration to a Development Addiction Treatment Center like quick! Just as troubling is how the Gladys Horborth Animal Resource Center that used to be at 1615 S. Laredo Street was closed and sold. Wouldnt it have made more sense to keep it open and remodel it? Again NON-SENSE. However, the closing of this Center bothers me on a different level. By closing the Center, they eliminated Gladys Horborth (the person) and her contributions to animal rights in the City of San Antonio. In a few words, the city erased womens history. Another such person was the late Melvin Lemler. Not seeking personal accolades, he asked former Mayor Phil Hardberger to name one of the new animal shelters after Gladys Horborth but research indicates there is no such place. Could it be that he was also dismissed by city government because he died in 2010? Instead this new facility will be named after Paul Jolly, a life-long animal advocate and Petco Foundation executive. Seriously? Unless we start learning our histories, we will not know that these things are happening. One final note, the same thing happened with Lady Patricia Brady, the woman who halfsister Iona donated about $1.1 Million of Lady Bradys money to the Robert B. Green Hospital, money that was used to restore the original structure from 1916 and re-opened in 1978 as the Brady Green Community Health Center. However with the opening of the new Robert B. Green Campus, Lady Patricia Bradys financial contributions have been erased. Yes, women and their history are erased yet again. Ladies, when will we do something about this? Un-ac-cep-ta-ble!

Mayoral Candidate Questionnaire_Irma Rosas 11

9.) What would you do to address the high vacancy rate in downtown buildings? I am aware of the many buildings vacant in the downtown area but I am also aware of those throughout the city. I envision those buildings being purchased, restored, and used before I would advocate for additional development throughout the city. People should make them their homes or their places of business. However, that possibility is not an easy task. Many people do not have the financial means to buy them and/or to restore them. The cost-of-living in San Antonio is high as compared to the low wages that they earn. People need livable wages and raising the minimum for this reason, and others, should be highly considered. I believe that this is when resident of San Antonio can consider becoming small business owners. People in our communities already have the skills and talent to make that happen but it seems that Castro and council members prefer to look the other way, to those jobs that require training and an expense to the taxpayers of San Antonio. Last summer I attended a conference at the new Nationwide Insurance building in sprawling District 6. The District has been sprawling out while the older section of it continues to have infrastructure needs. I know, my ex-partner rented our first house in that District. At this conference, a group of women presented on ways to start-up a new business. According to the representative from Accin Texas, the S.A. Chamber of Commerce provides small business loans at a 2% interest rate while they provide loans at 6%. Many of the people would prefer the loans at 2% but to qualify for them is more difficult. So while Accin Texas would like to offer them at 6%, financially they cannot afford it even though their success rate is high. It would seem that the success of the model at Accin Texas is functioning and I would be interested in learning more about it. Perhaps the city can assist the organization in providing loans at a lower the interest rate and maybe their model to can extended to include other types of loans. 10.) Is the Citys million-dollar incentive to create a downtown grocery store appropriate? Why or why not? Is there a better way to bring a grocery store downtown? No. There are enough H-E-B grocery stores on all sides of downtown. If we consider the location of City Hall and zip code 78205, the nearest store of this chain is located 1.5 miles away on 415 N. New Braunfels. There are an additional four stores located between 2.33-3.47 miles away. Currently the majority of the people moving into downtown are adults or small families and aside from being young and vivacious are also environmentally conscious, so walking and bicycling to the nearest grocery store are viable options. They can cross an uncluttered Hays Street Bridge or the Guadalupe Street Bridgeamong othersand actually bridge their experiences with the wonderful people of these sectors of the city. I just wish that someone would tell the young and vivacious and environmentally conscious adults how contaminated San Antonio is. Or how the water from the San

Mayoral Candidate Questionnaire_Irma Rosas 12 Antonio River that flows through the new development that they may live in, is actually recycled water from the Dos Rios Water Treatment Facility, like the water in the River Walk. All this water is the one we use in our homes, in ALL aspects. Think about it, this is why there are no fish in the water. There may be flying, plastic fish above the river but that is the only way they can survive given that the water has been treated with chlorine and then sulfur dioxide. Focus on how theres algae growing in some sections, a fact that insects such as flies looove. Has anyone noticed how green the water looks? Green here translates to algae. As someone who as a child had the option of swimming in the fresh water of Chicagos Lake Michigan or in public swimming pools, I find it alarming that no one swims in the San Antonio River and can only swim in chlorinated water. According to City Code 22-88, swimming in city parks and city public property [is] prohibited. This would explain why there is no swimming in Brackenridge Park and well one only needs to go to the Parkbehind the Witte Museumand see how the water gushes out from one of the walls. No one can swim there because the water is recycled water from Dos Rios. I wish I could say the same with San Pedro Park. The city closed the natural spring there many, many years ago and instead constructed a swimming pool. If you notice, there is water, like at Brackenridge Park, that also gushes out from one of the walls. However, there is a gi-normous problem! The water gushes into the pool where the community swims. No wonder the personnel there has asked swimmers to leave the pool more so than at other pools in the city. Yes, I have been all over my city. So I have been at the San Pedro pool on numerous occasions and on two separate occasions, the water was dark and warm and the personnel were frantically restoring the pH level of the water. The problem is that the final chemical process used at Dos Rios is the addition of sulfur dioxide, a chemical that removes the initial process of chlorination. It removes the chlorine. So when park officials attempt to chlorinate the swimming pool at San Pedro Park, they find it difficult because the sulfur in the water keeps REJECTING the chlorine. You tell me how ethical this is given that both chlorine and sulfur dioxide are toxic to the human body and to fish and other aquatic animals. Yet, the sulfur dioxide infused water is the water that is released into the San Antonio and Medina Rivers, hence Dos Rios/Two Rivers Water Treatment Facility. Just think about it. In times of drought in San Antonio, there always seems to be water in the San Antonio River. It is that plain and that simple. So to reiterate my answer to the initial question, there is no need for a grocery store downtown. Let us instead use the funds to reverse all damage that has been done and continues to be done to our environment so that we may reduce the number of loved ones who get sick and/or die as a result of environmental pollution. 11.) How can San Antonio balance economic development with historic preservation? 12.) Do you support union organizers' push for a Tip Integrity Act for the downtown hotel and restaurant industry?

Mayoral Candidate Questionnaire_Irma Rosas 13 Absolutely! I have been involved with union organizers in this effort since the summer of 2012. Listening to hotel and restaurant workers tell me their stories of how customers leave them tips for their work only for these tips to be stolen by their supervisors, managers, or business owners, was upsetting. While I was working on my bachelors degree, I worked as a server at a restaurant. My base salary was crappy so I looked forward to supplementing that crappy salary with my tips. I will not say that I was a fake in smiling, being friendly, and doing a good job serving just to assure a good tip because I feel I smile, am friendly, and generally take pride in the work I dosomething I learned from my parents; however, I will say that I smiled a little more, was a little more friendly, and did my job with extra pride because I needed the money. So when I heard the stories from hotel and restaurant workers, it was enough to motivate me to assist union organizers in additional ways so we could to inform the public of the Tip Integrity Act and get an ordinance passed. Owners, managers, supervisors in the hotel and restaurant industries should be held accountable to their employees and the city as a whole. However, I have also learned that employees working on commission are also experiencing the same unethical practices. All employees who supplement their salaries with tips and commissions should be able to easily verify their earnings from their employers. The city needs to protect employees from employer abuse. The city needs to protect employees like it protects the integrity of the downtown area from acts of wheat pasting. Protecting people who work downtown should come before protecting the image of the downtown area. I think it the time has come to address crappy base salaries. 13.) What is the Citys role in making consumer solar power affordable for residents as well as local businesses? In February, I attended another conference at the State Capitol and it was there that I learned how the State of Texas is lagging behind other states like California in the use of solar power. However I would like to point out that while we move more in that direction, we have to consider how there are still many communities who do not have standard electricity and many more that still do not have reliable electricity. The electricity in my apartment complex has gone out twice in the two years or so that I have been there, and it was built in 2008. How can we address a new source of energy when we still have communities being left behind? What will happen with all money that residents of the City of San Antonio have already invested with standard electricity? How can we expect the city to assure that communities will not be left behind with solar power? In my research, I have found out that there are solar panels already installed and located at the Dos Rios Water Treatment Facility. From what Gregg Eckhardt informs me, the energy goes into a grid and it is the State of Texas that decides who gets that energy from that grid. Did the residents of San Antonio pay for those panels? Add to that is how the city has now partnered with OCI Solar Power, a foreign corporation based in Korea, to provide the city with more solar panels. In an attempt to find out the logistics of the contract between City Public Service and OCI Solar Power, I have requested a copy of

Mayoral Candidate Questionnaire_Irma Rosas 14 the contract through an open records request from CPS. Kipling Giles, Senior Counsel for CPS, has replied and informed me that CPS objects to disclosure including but not limited to sections 552.104 and 552.133 of the Texas Public Information Act. Those sections speak to confidentiality of such information because releasing it would give advantage to a competitor or bidder. I am not alone in this quest. Nolan Hicks of the San Antonio Express News has also made the same request. CPS has sent their intentions to the State Attorney Generals office and Nolan and I currently await a response. If Nolan and I are denied access to this information, one has to wonder what information is truly being withheld from the public. As with the solar panels at Dos Rios, will the State of Texas, and not the residents of San Antonio who are paying for them, decide who gets the energy? So you see, I am conflicted about solar power. I would like sustainable energy because I for sure do not want nuclear power here or anywhere. I would like to propose that we also consider how we are using electricity and our obsession with it. A paperback book is still the best way to read. A deck of cards is still the best way to play cards. Pen and paper is still the best way to take notes. Natural lighting is still the best way to view art. Going to class is still the best way to learn. Lowering the air conditioning when people are cold is better than expecting them to carry sweaters/jackets in case it gets too cold at the movies or in class. Calling a friend/relative is still the best alternative to being on Facebook. Or are we just electricity whores? 14.) Is there more the City could do to protect the Edwards Aquifer in terms of building restrictions, funding conservation easements or other means? Historically, there has been no stopping development over the Edwards Aquifer Recharge Zone. Former Mayor Lila Cockrell has struggled since she was in office to address the need to protect the aquifer and avoid building over the recharge zone. But just as quickly as she voiced her concerned, she was silenced. I am convinced that women in San Antonio are too often disrespected. People like Lila Cockrell have been adamant about not building over the aquifer because compromises our fresh water source but also the limestone structure that lies underneath. Limestone is a porous rock, it has holes like that of pumice rock. It is through these holes that water flows when it undergoes a self-cleaning and mineral-infusing process. Here are my thoughts. I will not use actual visuals but instead will make you visualize. 1.) When structures are built over the aquifer, the pounding breaks the limestone. Think of what happens to a piece of chalk that falls to the ground. 2.) These structures are heavy. Think of what happens when you play Jenga and how the pieces at the bottom need equilibrium, otherwise a lack of it makes everything at the top fall. 3.) Whatever is spilled intentionally or not seeps into the aquifer especially in the recharge zone. Think of ointment that you place on a wound/infection on your skin. 4.) Development of homes,

Mayoral Candidate Questionnaire_Irma Rosas 15 apartment complexes, businesses, universities such as UTSA over the Recharge Zone promotes population growth and with this, traffic congestion. The emission of carbon monoxide into the atmosphere, when mixed with rainwater, becomes acid rain that is catastrophic to the limestone structure. Think of what happens to your teeth when you suck on lime (citrus). 5.) Currently there are about nine or so quarries located near or around the Recharge Zone. Think Fred Flintstone, the cartoon character. Some of them are Bexar County Quarry, Cementville Quarry, Bulverde Road Quarry, Martin Marietta Materials, Capitol Cement Quarry, etc. All of these quarries are located on or around the Recharge Zone and they all extract rocks such as limestone that is used for construction and/or the Eagle Ford Shale Play in South Texas. I am thinking of when I have or have seen others pick a block of ice (do not forget that ice is porous given the oxygen molecules) with an ice pick. When you pick at it, does it simply compromise a small portion of the block of ice or does it compromise the whole block of ice?

In general, think of the sinkholes that occurred because of weakened limestone in Florida. Or perhaps look around in your home or apartments and count the number of cracks on the walls. The limestone underneath is shifting. I bet a lot of people bought their homes without knowing they were built on top of the Recharge Zone and to me, something that threatens the well-being of any person is important to reveal. People must be given the choice to live on the Recharge Zone or not. Moreover, it should not be necessary to fund conservation easements over the Recharge Zone. Simply, stop building over our fresh water source and stop keeping the residents of San Antonio in the dark about potential dangers. Let there be light!!! We cannot, however, only consider the Edwards Aquifer because to the South there also exists the Carrizo-Wilcox Recharge Zone. This aquifer extends from Mexico to other U.S. states and it holds fresh to slightly saline water. Does the country of Mexico and other U.S. states know what city government in San Antonio is doing? Not only is the largest water treatment plant in San Antonio built over the C-W Recharge Zone but also the NuStar Oil Refinery. Emissions of sulfur dioxide by oil refineries such as NuStar are equally damaging to aquifers because just like carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide when mixed with rainwater creates acid rain that seeps into their structures. Our water and air are being contaminated and our health and that of our loved ones is being affected. IT MUST STOP! 15.) What are the most critical components to implementing Pre-K 4 SA? Are there any other opportunities for the City to support education?

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