As Ronald Reagan liked to say,
“Government isn’t the solution to our problems, government IS the problem.”
I’m running for city council to bring a NEW MINDSET to city hall that is REPRESENTATIVE OF the people; not government.
I believe that the role of government should always be to do the most good, for the most people, at the least cost! No government, at any level, should be in the business of granting personal favors or providing special financial benefits for a minority interest to the detriment of the majority.
When you go and vote on May 7 at our beautiful new city hall/administration building, try to answer for yourself why it is costing us $2.125 million, not including the $260 thousand in land or the guaranteed minimum interest of at least $190 thousand (if paid off early).
It’s an excellent example of why our city leaders need a new mindset!
However, the only way to change the mindset inside city hall is to change the people who are elected to office! It’s why I’m running for city council.
A new mindset means that in the future when/if the city council believes that a tax increase is absolutely necessary, the decision to move forward should rest with taxpayers to give their consent. Any plan for our city’s future must begin by asking the people of MC what kind of city they want MC to become. No limits may be imposed that violates the personal liberty of what citizens may do on their own property, unless the people, through a vote, agree to do so.
The burden then falls on the mayor and city council to convince citizens that the path they want to travel is right, rather than putting the burden on taxpayers without their consent.
Alongside Councilmen Gary Lovell & Jerry Klutts (who are not up for re-election until next year), Wayne Orchard and my election will establish a new majority of four fiscal conservatives!
WITH A NEW CITY COUNCIL MAJORITY, THE FOLLOWING CAN FINALLY BE A REALITY!
Focus on Staying McLendon-Chisholm!
If elected, the new mindset of the city council-majority will turn its focus FROM “becoming the Highland Park of Rockwall County” TO providing essential city services as we preserve our rural community!
Prospective and incoming residents should be assured that their city leaders are committed to protecting the rural lifestyle punctuated by its wide-open spaces and low tax rate in contrast to what may be found in surrounding cities. Our goal will be to attract families that prefer the more simple life to a high-end, government service-heavy environment.
It also means that we maintain and enforce the standards within our city that were adopted to protect this unique lifestyle. The problem isn’t that our city needs to raise its standards but those in power need to adhere to and enforce the standards already in place!
Make MC’s Essential Needs THE Priority
This new mindset establishes a renewed commitment to focus on needs over wants in much the same way that most families in MC must live.
This means that city leaders will no longer govern with the mindset that”‘if we want something that we can’t afford we simply generate more revenue by taxing the people.” The city council majority’s decision to purchase iPads for the Mayor and 5 city council members, with full data plans (in a city with a population of 1,800) is just one example of unrestrained fiscal irresponsibility that must stop!
Instead, when the city has a genuine need, the council first asks “can we afford it and if not, how do we pay for it?”
It also means that decisions that either add debt, increase taxes, or take away the personal liberty of what citizens may do on their own property, are those for the people to decide. This, of course, will place a huge burden on the mayor and city council to convince voters that something like a tax increase is necessary, instead of placing the burden on taxpayers without their consent!
The Law Abiding Culture of MC
Our goal as a community should not be to create a police department, but should instead be on creating an environment where a city police department is unnecessary. After all, police don’t prevent crime, they enforce the law when it is broken. So when we know and watch out for our neighbors we then become less susceptible to crime.
City’s love police departments for one primary reason; revenue generation!
However, I don’t want to be like residents of Rockwall, Heath, Rowlett, or Highland Park who muse about the day one becomes a “bonafide citizen” is when they get their first traffic ticket!
Place Lasting Limits on City Hall!
To ensure that this mindset never changes, limits will be placed on what our mayor and city council can and cannot do without the people’s consent.
I believe that this is how any local government that is “of,” “by” and “for” the people, SHOULD WORK!
Never Violate the Peoples Trust
One of the things that drew our family to MC was our little city hall building located at 205.
It projected what I interpreted as a fiscally conservative mindset of government. Ironically, it led me to offer blind trust to our city leaders.
Like so many others I’ve talked to, my blind trust made me believe that it was unnecessary to pay attention to what was going on at city hall. After all, I was in a city with a population of less than 2,000, where everyone reportedly knew everyone, which is why I felt confident that city leaders would be sure to include taxpaying citizens like us in future decisions that might put our city into debt, raise our taxes, or limit the personal liberty of what we can do on our own property.
As so many other citizens have expressed to me about themselves, I was admittedly naive in making these assumptions.
We are all now paying the price for our unbridled trust and inattention, locked into a 20-year, $2.125 million bond debt (not including the guaranteed interest) for a city hall/administration building that’s better suited for Highland Park than McLendon-Chisholm, and poorly placed inside our city for convenient access.
Transparency will be the new watchword of a new council-majority with the mindset that citizens WILL hold us accountable to following through on the promises that we make!
MC City Government Should Never Be Santa Clause
As your city councilman, my goal is to provide only those city services that the majority of the people vote to pay for.
This is why I ask for your vote on May 7 to elect me as your City Councilman in Place 4.
Blessings, Robert Steinhagen
Candidate for McLendon-Chisholm City Council, Place 4, Founder of Citizens for Representative Government