NPT City: The Jaime Perez slate?
Bear in mind we haven’t confirmed the authenticity of this yet. Working on that.
Follow the jump to read the letter.
You can read this in its original form here.
You are receiving this letter because you are a taxpayer and a voter. My name is Jaime O. Perez and I am writing on behalf of Americans for Energy Independence (AEI PAC). Americans for Energy Independence is dedicated to promoting renewable energy and fiscal conservatism. The upcoming election on May 9th is very important. There are many issues that confront taxpayers and consumers of public services, not the least of which are efficiency in energy use and in the provision of basic services.
When AEI PAC asked for me to participate in the selection of candidates to endorse for the May city election, I was happy to do it. More than anyone, I understand the cynicism of those that would paint all politicians as corrupt, ego-driven incompetents. The truth is not far from this description. I work daily with many of them. Yet, on occasion, some candidates rise up beyond the stereotype and offer something worthwhile to the citizens of El Paso. Al Catucci, Howard Barton, Jose Alexandro Lozano, Melina Castro and Robert Larson Barron are such people.
Mayoral candidate Al Frank Catucci is a successful entrepreneur and athlete. Howard Barton is a disabled veteran and a journalist who is a fierce fiscal conservatism; Jose Alexandro Lozano is a successful businessman with an inordinate amount of horse sense; Melina Castro has been a staunch voice for fiscal prudence; and Robert Larson Barron is a working man, a welder who is tired of out of control spending and taxation at city hall. All of these candidates are worthy models of what is possible with dedication and a sincere and honest work ethic.
The AEI PAC respectfully requests you vote for the entire Reform Slate. Only by electing all of them, at the same time, can we hope to bring about the changes they propose. Otherwise, the tax and spend majority will continue to squander the city’s and your prosperity.
What do they want to do for you and the City of El Paso? The slate has endorsed a significant and sweeping overhaul of city government. They are not satisfied with touting the same tired slogans of tax and spend. They are unified in their commitment to cut spending and reduce taxes. They are committed to seriously consider budget reductions next year.
El Paso has not been able to overcome its ‘old boy network’ system of decision making. Cronyism is the disease that has destroyed economic initiative and entrepreneurship in our city. For too long, local government officials have consistently taken care of their friends. If you are not a part of their network, you need not apply for jobs, contracts or incentives.
This type of corruption is not necessarily criminal but equally, if not more, destructive. Cronyism destroys the competitive nature of the free enterprise system and sends a terrible message to the outside business world. It makes hard working entrepreneurs think twice about doing business here. They know there is no fair and competitive playing field and this ensures they will not locate their company here. Adding to this problem is the fact El Paso’s tax situation is out of control. Out of 788 counties with 65,000 people or more surveyed by the Federal Tax Bureau in Washington D.C El Paso ranked 33rd highest.
The four candidates for representative agree. They want to cut spending and reduce property taxes by creating prosperity through economic and corporate growth in El Paso. This can happen by working aggressively and proactively with area business leaders. El Paso needs to recruit American companies that match the needs of our community. We must move away from the tax and spend philosophy our local government has adopted over the past few years. We have got to be more responsible with tax revenue and firmly oppose any debt without voter approval.
One immediate policy that can benefit the downtown is the relocation of city and county related agencies to the downtown. Returning the El Paso Water Utilities, agency headquarters to the downtown can revitalize it. This will also support businesses that are struggling with an economy in recession and the devaluation of the Mexican peso. The AEI Slate promises to:
1. Increase energy efficiency and promote renewable energy;
2. Set an immediate target of budget reductions across the board of 5 percent in the first year and 3 percent thereafter over the next three years. Economic development is a result of growing prosperity in the private sector not raising taxes;
3. Stop issuance of Certificates of Obligation. If anything has been learned from the national recession, it is that excessive spending leads to public bankruptcy;
4. Gain control of the Public Service Board (PSB) and land and storm water utility policies. Storm water fees must be in line with short term needs and address long term needs consistent with what the community can afford.
5. El Paso must again believe in itself not because we are “full of it” as the infomercial playing on television spouts but by regaining a sense we can help ourselves and do better.
Our slate of candidates agrees — we must overcome mediocrity and challenge those assumptions that for too long have stifled our city. We have to demand leadership and hold people accountable. Your desire to make a difference is all that is needed to work together towards a far better community.
Please vote on May 9th and give these worthy candidates and our city an opportunity to create sustainability and prosper. Thank you for your kind attention. Please feel free to contact AEI PAC at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jaime O. Perez