Lake Highlands native Alan Walne recently was elected to his first full term on the City Council without opposition.

The Council post is Walne’s first elective position, and you can tell he isn’t a career politician yet: He shot from the hip recently during the fourth annual Advocate Interview, a far-ranging, hour-long discussion with a community leader about our City, our public schools, apartments and racism, and plenty of other topics some public figures have a hard time discussing frankly.

Past Interview subjects have included then-Mayor Steve Bartlett, RISD Superintendent Carolyn Bukhair and Mayor Ron Kirk.

The format for our Interview is simple: We met Walne for an early-morning photo and interview session, turned on a tape-recorder and began our discussion.

Walne’s responses are unedited and represent his complete thoughts on the questions put to him by Advocate staff members Carol Walker and Rick Wamre.

Reading this story will take some time, but we think you’ll enjoy this lively, unedited format, which is unprecedented among area publications.

So set aside some time, sit back and enjoy this annual opportunity to find out what one of our City’s leaders really thinks about the issues that affect our lives.

The Advocate Interview

ADVOCATE: You were critical of the City’s new pooper-scooper law, which allows for fines if pet owners don’t pick up after their pets if the pets relieve themselves on someone else’s property. What do you really think about that law?

WALNE: Well, we actually voted on that law twice. The first time, it lost for a tie vote, and then it was brought back up for the second time.

First of all, I didn’t want to deal with it the second time because I don’t like to go through and rehash an item that has already been dealt with.

But the reason I didn’t support the ordinance is because it’s one of those ordinances that admittedly – even by those who were carrying it forward – was unenforceable. It was something that we weren’t going to be able to enforce. The thought behind it being that we would have an ordinance and, therefore, people would do it because it was an ordinance.

I think that there is a fallacy in that – as much as anything else in teaching kids that if you have ordinances, and you don’t have to adhere to them because no one is going to enforce them.

It’s not that I don’t think that people should have the courtesy that, if they’re walking their dogs, to clean up after them or whatever. But it’s more in this particular case that we had an unenforceable ordinance.

Secondly, from a cost perspective, code enforcement personnel are going to be the ones to answer the call when someone does call. Code enforcement is already overburdened with the amount of work that they have. And the cost associated with sending them out and following up – I mean, you’re putting them in a difficult situation of, well, how do you identify a dog, how do you know it was that dog – you bring up more questions than you solve.

ADVOCATE: Do you think there are a lot of laws like that, where they can’t be enforced, but the City passes them to make people happy?

WALNE: I don’t know if there are a lot of laws like it, but if any law like that were to come up, you’re probably going to find that I would oppose it.

ADVOCATE: How come so many people on the Council were in favor of something like that when, like you said, common sense kind of dictates: How could it be enforced?

WALNE: You know, it was one of those political deals where you’re getting a lot of phone calls from the people who want it passionately. I mean, there’s some folks who it just really disturbs greatly that someone is walking their dog and allowing them to dump in their yard.

There were some folks who were pretty diligent about calling in and pushing the issue. So I think that it just really came down to Council members figuring: Well, if folks want it that bad, then we’ll see what we can do. I don’t think that’s necessarily why you pass ordinances.

ADVOCATE: Well, I guess we’ll transition into the apartment situation in Lake Highlands.

WALNE: From poop to apartments (laughing). Speaking of poop, how about those apartments?

ADVOCATE: Yes, it’s a smooth transition. Well, obviously when the apartments were built, they changed the demographics of Lake Highlands. And they also created sort of a white flight, so to speak, from neighborhood schools. It seems as if a lot of people have taken their children out of those schools because of the change of demographics. What does that say about the future of Lake Highlands?

WALNE: Well, I think we’ve gone through a transition. You know, the advent of the apartments is not when it actually started. It was the change of a law from adult-only apartments to having families (allowed to reside in apartments). Hopefully, we peaked or valleyed or whatever out on that particular situation.

Northlake Elementary, I know, has had some difficulties, along with Skyview Elementary. I think the district has looked at and recognized the fact that we do have a situation here that needs to be dealt with.

I think that given another elementary in our particular area and some of the other things that they’re doing that they’re trying to address some of those problems. Being in the Exchange Club for the number of years that I have spent there and having been through the schools with our children – we went through the same evaluation when our kids were going to go to school. What do we want to do? Do we want to go to a private situation, or do we want to go up to the local Wallace Elementary?

Frankly, we couldn’t have had a better situation doing what we did. (Editor’s Note: The Walne’s sent their children to public schools.)

Is it difficult? Yeah, it can be. Your kids, when they grow up, are going to deal with situations from this point forward, if that’s the case.

The situation though, that I see as much as anything, is that we have to have apartments that are willing to be good neighbors. Some of the apartments have created workrooms and computers, and some have been opened, allowing some of the local church folks inside.

Lake Highlands Methodist has a program where they go into the apartments and try to help them in different aspects – whether it be from a tutoring standpoint or a churching perspective. They (apartments) are not going to go away, the apartments are there, and what we have to do is deal with the situation.

I’ve talked to several different church folks who are involved, and I want to try to expand upon their doings. I talked to Dr. Carolyn Bukhair (RISD’s superintendent) two or three weeks ago, and Dr. Kirk London about the school district becoming more open for an after-school programming standpoint.

Possibly groups like this wanting to do some type of after-school program, but the situation always before has been you can’t be at the campus because, and I guess the reason being the liability standpoint – they felt like they’re in charge of the kids if they’re there.

But Carolyn and Kirk both indicated they would bring us some sort of proposal, and we’ll take a look and see. They’re starting to realize that maybe there are ways you can approach some of those problems.

ADVOCATE: So they’d provide programs for students whose parents weren’t there when they came home from school?

WALNE: Well, yeah. The problem really with kids who are apartment kids – there’s not a negative about apartment kids. The difference is that if you have a child who doesn’t have the tutoring at home – in other words, mom or dad, making sure that you get the homework done and help you with the homework.

It’s not a situation where you have bad parenting: A lot of times you have a situation where that parent is trying to make ends meet, and they’re working, they work late, and the child does not have the opportunity to spend that type of time with their parents.

One of the things that we’ve gotta do is create a tutoring or mentoring situation for those kids, so in the classroom, the teacher ultimately is not having to slow down because that child was not able to get everything done and be on the same level with the kid that maybe mom and dad spend an hour or two on the homework the night before, and they’re ready to move on.

ADVOCATE: And you think a program like that would be widespread throughout the district? Is that something that would come up in the near future?

WALNE: I think it’s probably going to be a process. I don’t think we can just jump in, and all of a sudden it happens everywhere. My particular view on it is that what we’ve got to do is expand upon and look to the church community to help with providing for our neighborhood.

It seems to be a natural match to me. I know from at least my Christian prospective in service and helping your neighbor and all the other stuff, that that is something that we probably need to look closer into.

I think the church needs to look to how they can solve some of these problems rather than the government always trying to solve the problems.

ADVOCATE: Is there anything the City can or should be doing about that issue?

WALNE: As far as after-school programs?


WALNE: There’s a lot the City does do in regard to after-school programming. I mean, there’s some Community Block Development Funds that are used for after-school programming. Skyview gets some funding.

To me, it’s more of a school-district-in-the-community solution more so than City government being the solution. I don’t believe that City government can necessarily take on all the different roles of social service-type problems.

In this particular case, I think you have an education situation. We have buildings that are there, the children are there, and if there’s homework and all the other, the child doesn’t have a parent at home to help with homework or whatever.

It seems to be somewhat natural that if there’s some kind of program that can be developed and put in there after school, then the child gets what the child needs. I think that what we really need to shift to is: What does the child need so that he or she is on the same level as the rest of the class, and move the thing forward.

These kids are smart. They just need to have the same tools offered to them, but we have got to have some extra time in the afternoons. I can just see that we need to open that realm of possibilities, the possibilities that we haven’t really pushed before.

ADVOCATE: What do you think it is about this issue that seems to scare people away from the neighborhood schools? I mean, what element of the problem? We hear fairly frequently: I moved to Lake Highlands for better schools. And then they cite the influx of apartment kids as a reason to move to private school. Why is this some sort of triggering point with people?

WALNE: I think some is real, and some is perception. When you have someone say, “Well, there’s a bunch of apartment kids there,” or “The majority is apartment kids,” there’s a little bit of paranoia that sets in.

Some is real. I mean there are some real significant problems that exist. I hadn’t been at Northlake, but I know from talking with Laurie Burns, who has been the PTA president up there this last year, and her children are there. There’s been a perception of the classrooms not being disciplined, and the teachers can’t get stuff done.

Laurie tells me that’s been the case in the past, but that’s definitely not the case now. Trying to convince people, though, to come back and see that there is a marked difference is now a chore.

So I think there’s this somewhat problem of perception, the discipline situation in the classroom, but I still think that goes back to if the kid really is up to speed with the work the classroom is doing, I don’t think we’d have some of those problems. I think that’s a natural reaction if you’re not on the same level with the other children and where the teacher is or the curriculum.

You do something different whether it’s a behavior situation or whatever. What you need to do is make sure the kids are up to speed with the rest of the children and the curriculum.

ADVOCATE: Do you think racism is an issue at all? Or how much of an issue?

WALNE: It’s kind of a catch-all, I guess,sometimes. Yeah, I don’t think there’s any question there’s a certain amount of fear of the unknown. I guess. I don’t know. I guess that gets back to somewhat of a perception situation, also.

But it’s something that we have to look at and be honest about. If someone does feel that way because of the fact that they’re minority kids or whatever, I think you need to be honest that that’s why and not necessarily because of the education or whatever.

Frankly, I think that we’re moving in the right direction there as far as away from those types of fears. When I was in Lake Highlands (public schools), when Richardson was desegregated, you know Hamilton Park was a full elementary, junior high and high school and everyone was from the Hamilton Park area, which was a predominantly African-American community.

And through the desegregation era, they closed the high school, and those children had to go to one of the other Richardson high schools, Richardson and Lake Highlands and, I’m not sure, I think Pierce may have just opened, but the schools suddenly had a greater population of African-American schoolmates that we were going to school with, and it just really wasn’t a problem.

My daughter has come up through Lake Highlands schools. So has my son, but she’s graduating this year. We spent the full time in Wallace Elementary and Lake Highlands Junior High and then the high school, and there really just hasn’t been that much problem.

Really, the only problem that I see is trying to help some of these minority kids – in particular, African-American kids – excel and not be criticized by their peer group for doing things that Anglo kids do, whether it’s running for president of the class or making really good grades or whatever the plateau is that they’re hitting, and not be criticized.

That should be something that everyone looks to and tries to achieve rather than that peer group trying to drag you back.

ADVOCATE: Well, the apartments have obviously affected our schools, but what about crime? Do you think apartments have affected crime? I know that crime is on the decline in Dallas, but you’ve mentioned that crime is on the rise in Lake Highlands. What particular crimes are on the rise, and why is that so?

WALNE: Well, I don’t think so much as crime is on the rise in Lake Highlands. We didn’t see some of the decreases in some areas, we saw some increases in crime in Lake Highlands and District 10. Part of District 10 is down in the Ferguson-LBJ-Garland Road area, and if you recall here recently, that’s where a lot of the pizza delivery hold-ups occurred. That skewed the figures somewhat for the first part of this year.

But I’ll tell you, talking to Chief Martinez there at our sub-station that the apartments are by far where the majority of the crime happens. I had them do a map and lay out the crime statistics on that map, and whether it be armed robbery or assault or whatever the category, it was laid out and skewed across this map.

It’s pretty obvious where the problems are. You’ll see concentrations on the map, and the apartments are where those concentrations are. Now at the same time, you’ve got to understand that you have a larger concentration of people there. So, I don’t know from a population perspective how much more versus single-family homes. You’ve got a greater concentration – a higher percentage – of folks per square foot or whatever, in those areas. But it’s definitely what Chief Martinez and what the statistics show is so much of it is crime in the apartments.

But at the same time, though, a lot of the crime has to do with domestic situations. A lot of the assault situations and everything else are domestic. So you don’t have a situation where if you’re out walking that there’s a problem with assault in the area. Most of the assaults in the area have occurred because there is some kind of dispute family-wise or something of this nature – it’s a confined situation.

But I think the crime figures are encouraging; it’s just that we do have some situations that I want to make sure people are aware of and the Chief in our particular area is aware of.

You know, Hamilton Park and part of Forest Lane has been designated as one of the weed and seed areas that will be worked on this summer. But it’s not an acute problem, it’s just something we need to keep an eye on.

ADVOCATE: I’m sure as a Councilperson, you are bombarded with talk about crime. People are always wanting to know about crime and how to fight to crime, so you personally have probably formulated some of your own thoughts on the subject. What do you think people can do to really prevent crime for the short-term and long-term?

WALNE: Probably the one area that affects us all, more so than any other area about crime, has to do with drug abuse. Because you’ve got a situation where there is theft – whether it be the theft of your vehicle or somebody breaking a window out in your vehicle or stealing something out of your vehicle or somebody coming out and stealing stuff out of your garage when it’s open.

Or there’s, and I don’t know the particular percentage, but I’ll tell you a percentage that is very large as for the crime that occurs that you can tie directly to drug abuse.

But there are things we can do to prevent crime from happening to ourselves, such as have your car locked, and if you have something in it, put your items in the trunk. If you’re out in the yard, close your garage.

There are always things you can do as far as from a protection perspective, but from the standpoint of how do you solve the problem, until we come to real grips with some of the drug and alcohol problems that we have – any particular drug in this case – the solution is really not achievable if all you’re doing is watching out for yours and not going down to someone else.

I think that one of the things that you’ve seen with crime statistics down, though, a lot has to do with the fact that they’re locking folks up, and they’re keeping them locked up for a longer period of time. You don’t have the people who are perpetrating those crimes getting back out and just going back doing what they were doing before.

But as far as making a long-term solution, alcohol and drugs are the particular reason crime is happening. Unless you solve that particular problem, you’re probably not going to solve crime.

ADVOCATE: Well, I guess that leads me right into my next question. Lake Highlands seems to have a problem with teen drinking. We’ve talked about this before, and you’ve mentioned that it seems to you that teens drink more heavily than they did when you were in high school. Why do you think they are drinking more?

WALNE: I don’t know that kids are really drinking more. Compared to my era, there may now be a wider group of kids drinking, but what we have talked about before is that there seems to be more of a “drink and get drunk” situation.

Keg parties – no one would have ever thought of having keg parties in my era. Maybe that’s because from a marketing perspective, they have pony kegs and all these other things that they make them more available.

You know, we talked somewhat about this in the past, and I do believe there is a certain amount of a parenting situation that we do have in regards to, say, in my era, when you went home, I had to make sure that one of my parents was awake and then let them know I was home.

And you know, if you did that, you had to be at a certain point of sobriety to pass the test. I don’t know from the stories I have heard and everything else of when some of these situations where kids are fairly inebriated, I don’t know how they get in. It just doesn’t seem like there’s a lot of reaction.

From a parenting standpoint, I’ve talked before on the fact that one of the things that I think we have to do as parents is get to where we share our information with each other a little more.

I’ve told the story before that when I was growing up, there was a beauty shop right next to where the Highlander School is – right there on Plano Road, a little, bitty building. But my mother went there when I was growing up, and I mean, when she’d come home on Friday afternoons, she knew everything that was going on in the neighborhood – and I’d get grilled, you know, about what’s going on, and I heard this, and so and so says this has happened, and you tell me what’s going on and all this.

I just hated for her to go to the beauty shop, because I knew I was going to catch a hundred questions when I got home.

And there doesn’t seem to be that type of situation today. There seems to be more of a you don’t want to say something about someone else’s child because what if that person takes it wrong and it strains the friendship or whatever, instead of that being the friendship.

You’re doing it because you do care about and do love this individual, and you do love their child, and you don’t want to see anything happen to their child.

It really amazes me today. And I’ve had situations like this come up where I’ve gone to a parent because I’ve had a fear factor that if I don’t do that, what happens if something does happen to that child, or they cause something else to happen to another child? Or it affects their future in some way?

So I think that’s something that, first of all, we’ve got to really take a tight rein on as parents and be willing to do something about and have an attitude towards the fact that alcohol is a serious problem.

I’m sure that if you go to any major counseling outfit and say: When you’re counseling a scenario, how often does alcohol abuse come up as more of a core problem in regard to marital problems or job-related problems or whatever the major difficulty is, you’ll find that alcohol is one of those very, very big parts that someone has to get over before they can deal with their other situation.

So what we’re doing here with a group of teenagers is that if we don’t establish with them now that alcohol, in itself, is not inherently bad, but what I see as being bad is the extent to which they drink.

Because that’s going to be bad, that’s going to have an affect on them if they become where they can’t handle alcohol without thinking you’ve got to get plastered every time you drink.

That’s going to affect them from now on. It’s a huge problem, a huge problem.

ADVOCATE: We’ve written one story about teen loitering and drinking at the Lake Highlands North Recreation Center, and after we ran that story, we received a couple more calls about other spots in Lake Highlands where kids drink. We both know they move around all over the place and I guess the last thing I wanted to ask regarding this subject is that some parents provide a place for teens to drink. What do you think about parents providing a drinking spot for teens in their own home?

WALNE: Well, first of all, let’s make sure that there’s a difference when mom and dad are out of town, and the kids happen to throw a party, and parents actually providing a place and providing the alcohol.

If a parent wants to allow their child to have a drink or two or whatever in their home, I think that’s a part of the parenting decision to be made, and that’s their decision.

I think, though, that you cross the line when you provide a party situation, and in most cases to where other parents don’t have any idea that that’s what their child is going to participate in, I think that’s a criminal act, without question.

You get into a grayer area when you get into a situation where the parents know that the child is going there, and the parent has called in and said: We’re going to have beer here or whatever, and is that OK with you?

I don’t know if that’s a good decision, but I don’t think it’s the same as a parent allowing a child to throw a party without anyone’s knowledge that this is going on. Either they are trying to be seen as a great guy by the kids or making their child seem like they’re neat because you’re able to go over there and do this.

I think that’s criminal.

ADVOCATE: OK, leading away from crime. A lot of people are concerned about the Northwest Highway overpass near Buckner and Audelia. A forum was held several months ago, and many of the neighborhood attendants complained about the overpass ruining the beauty of the park land and everything. What’s going on with that right now?

WALNE: The state will have another hearing this summer sometime. It doesn’t have anything to do with anything that has happened, as far as people being opposed or in favor, to have another hearing. The state has to follow certain guidelines in regard to park land, and what happened is that they didn’t give a far enough advance notice of the meeting before, so they have to go back and have another meeting.

We – we being Mary Poss, myself and Judge Jackson – had gone to TXDOT (the Texas Department of Transportation) and requested to them that if they were going to go forward with this whether or not they would allow a beautification committee to be tied in with it, making sure that anything that they do to the area would be park sensitive and it would add to the park, rather than subtract from the park.

In that process, in the first meeting that we had with the core group – which were the two park board members in the district, along with the three of us, representatives from the park department, some staff, and some TXDOT folks – there were several issues that came up such as some of the hydraulics of the water flow of the three bridges going into White Rock Lake, and they’re doing some study on that, and they’ll come back to us before anything else moves forward.

I will tell you that that was a hard decision because there are a lot of folks who are concerned about that park land. I grew up here, I played on Flagpole Hill many a day. I played baseball at Norbuck Park – I’m very familiar, and I love that area, and if I thought for a minute that what we’re doing would actually end up being something that is a detriment, I wouldn’t be for it.

I think that intersection at Audelia/Buckner is dangerous, and I think we’ve got traffic flow that goes through the park and accesses White Rock Trail that can be addressed with part of this.

But I also think we can do some real beautification if we build a bridge that looks like it belongs in a park so that when someone sees that bridge, they’ll think: Oh, that must be White Rock area because that definitely looks like a bridge that would be White Rock – in other words, the facing of it is done in such a way that it is a beautification process and not just a new road process.

What I would like to see is that we end up with an enhanced highway from a beautification project through the park and not just throw up a bridge that looks like it belongs at LBJ and Central.

We need to have a bridge that looks like it belongs in White Rock park.

ADVOCATE: You grew up in the area, and you own a business, and you’re on City Council. Do you find yourself often having a different perspective than your peers on City Council because you’re a business owner?

WALNE: Oh, I think without question I do.

ADVOCATE: Give us an example.

WALNE: There’s just times that sometimes if you are dealing with people all of the time, you understand employees. For instance, when we’re dealing with issues that have to do with City employees, and when you’re dealing with employee situations, you understand the ramifications of some of the employee law scenarios that you get into and all, where some of my colleagues really don’t have any kind of a handle on that at all – they’ve never dealt strictly with employee issues. There’s a big difference in perception.

Understanding the profit and loss type situations, there are certain things that you do and don’t do – you have to make sure, from a financial perspective, that you’re a little more conservative.

ADVOCATE: Do you feel respected as a Councilperson?

WALNE: I think so. Council has been pretty calm to this point. I’m sure that we’ll have some times that come up where maybe I’m not seen as being sensitive as I should be, you know, on some different issues. And from the same standpoint, I’d say that most all of my colleagues I have that same respect for.

ADVOCATE: You’re not too worried about whether they think you’re sensitive or you’re not?

WALNE: You know, it’s just sometimes that sensitivity is not the issue. Whether or not I am sensitive is not the issue – it’s whether or not I feel like it’s the right decision. I’m not too concerned about whether or not I’m seen as sensitive if we have a situation where there’s definitely – whether it be a right or wrong type thing morally, or if it has to do with some of the racial issues.

I am sensitive, but if it comes down to the fact that you make a decision because it’s the right thing to do, then it’s the right thing to do, and how they feel about it one way or another is not really my concern.

ADVOCATE: Do you plan to pursue any other political offices besides City Council?

WALNE: No. I really didn’t think I’d ever do this.

ADVOCATE: What made you want to run for City Council?

WALNE: (Laughing) What made me?

ADVOCATE: What was the triggering point that led you to run for the office?

WALNE: I think the circumstances just come along. Obviously, in this particular situation, Donna Halstead decided to step out and run for another office, and it was there, you know, I was approached and asked to give it thought, and quite frankly, before I knew it, I was stepping into the role.

Having spent a number of years on Park Board (four years on Park Board) – Park Board is kind of a micro City Council, an administrative board with the same configuration and all the other, it’s probably as close a training ground as there is for City Council.

City Plan Commission is fairly close to that type of structure, but not an administrative body from the standpoint of hiring and firing their director like Park Board is.

But it just kind of happened. I love Lake Highlands. It’s a situation where our particular district is almost all Lake Highlands. There’s one small segment that is not. As a Council member, you always have to keep that area in mind because you don’t want to forget that they’re there. It is somewhat difficult in our particular situation with Lake Highlands being so predominantly seen.

ADVOCATE: How many hours a week do you set aside for City Council work?

WALNE: I don’t know that you can necessarily put it on a per day. Some days, it’s all day, and other days, it’s two or three hours.

I’d have to say that unless you are prepared to have a 40-hour a week side job, you shouldn’t be on City Council. Because by the time you spend one to two days down there, and by the time you have one or two meetings – I have a meeting this afternoon that will probably take an hour or so – and by the time you’ve driven Downtown to your office and back, and then on the weekends you have events – I have an event to go to tonight.

I’m on the Dallas Visitors Commissions, the Bureau Board, and the Dallas Regional Building Coalition and the Executive Committee – by the time you’ve done all these other things, and you add it all up, you have a commitment of 30-40 hours a week.

It’s not eight to five, but through the week and weekends you spend 30-40 hours on City Council.

ADVOCATE: What does your wife have to say about that? It probably comes out of family time or what had been family time, I assume?

WALNE: Joan has been very supportive. It’s one of those things where, definitely, I couldn’t do what I’m doing if she wasn’t doing what she’s doing. Our children are incredible, and they’re incredible because they have an incredible mother.

She’s taken on an awful lot of the roles, as far as making sure everything is OK with them, especially from their educational perspective and everything else.

You have to have a certain situation in order to do what I’m doing – from a business standpoint, having the right people. I do have an incredible group of folks that operate our shops (four Herb’s Paint and Body shops, a glass company and a management company that oversees the others, so there are six different entities), but to have all that and then have support from the family perspective.

First of all, to have two children who are willing to strive for excellence like they are, they’re definitely wonderful children, taking what their talents are and what their possibilities are and squeezing out what they should squeeze out of that. They don’t leave a lot of potential unturned.

ADVOCATE: Any last comments or things you’d like to say that we haven’t hit upon?

WALNE: I really enjoy this job. You know, we did a deal yesterday for Jack Evans, a street was being named for him, and he’s very much one of the mentors of mine as far as City politics and all.

He kind of capped it off when we were talking the other day, and he was appreciative of the fact that this was happening for him.

And I said: This was the least the City could do for you to show just to show their appreciation for what you’ve done.

And he said: Well, you know, I did it because I wanted to.

You’re in service – you’re serving the public when you do this. From a standpoint of why you do it, you do it because you want to. And that’s just what I’m doing, this is just speaking from my perspective, not to say anything different from anyone else’s view of why they do it. But I’m not doing it because I want to run for another office, or because I want to have a situation from a business standpoint where I can enhance myself by getting to know certain people or any of the other.

This is not a suggestion that anybody else is doing this for that reason, but I’m just saying that you don’t do it, in my view, for the kind of reasons that I just mentioned. It’s done to just serve your area and your City.

In my case, that’s why I’m doing it. I hope that folks perceive, even though there can be and there are differences sometimes in opinion, whether it be pooper-scooper laws or Northwest Highway and Buckner.

What you really do, or what I really try to do, is weigh out the pluses and minuses, and whatever the scale comes out to with the strong pluses, I support.

I’m working to improve the entire City as a whole, not just the district that I represent.