Incumbent says her business experience is an asset to the council
Christopher Maher, Alice Echo-News Journal
Dorella Elizondo is seeking her third term to the city council, and she believes her experience both on the council and in the business community sets her apart from other candidates for the office.
Elizondo, a 1991 graduate of Alice High School, was the 1990 Junior Citizen of the Year for Alice. She has an associates degree in sociology from Bee County College, and attended Texas A&I University in Kingsville. She and her husband, Andres Elizondo, have three children. She and her husband are the owners of Del Cielo Home Care, Del Cielo Adult Day Care and Littlest Angel Therapy.
"I believe my business expertise gives me the ability to apply that knowledge to our city," Elizondo said. "I can see the point of view of the employer, which would be the city, but also of the employee."
As an incumbent, Elizondo said she is proud of several things she has helped accomplish while in office.
Those items include overseeing the completion of the Goliad Street repair project and establishing a payment system to help elderly and disabled residents pay their utility bills.
Elizondo said she was also proud of the work she has done to improve the city's parks, which has been one of her goals since she took office.
"When I first got onto the council, we would put in $25,000 for the parks. This past budget cycle, we put in $250,000," Elizondo said. "The parks are a quality-of-life issue, because they are a reflection of your town."
One of the key issues currently facing the city, Elizondo said is the need to repair the city's aging water and wastewater infrastructure. Although Elizondo was one of two council members to vote against reducing a bond on which voters will decide May 12 to $9.6 million from $20 million, Elizondo said she supported the issue because it would provide some assistance for the city.
"Some of our street lines are so old and crumbling, and there's no water pressure. We really need to move a lot of our water lines from under streets," Elizondo said.
"We need to start planning our development and thinking smarter, so we're not doing the same work twice."
Elizondo said she also felt the city council should work to promote housing growth in the area.
"We need more affordable housing in this area," Elizondo said. "Through the Economic Development Corporation, we can cooperate with developers, and we've also passed ordinances to help make it easier for them."
Another issue facing the city is the need to fill key positions in the city's administration. Elizondo said the incoming council should be diligent in reviewing applicants for the positions.
"I think it would be a great disservice to our city if we did not review the 20-plus resumes and continue the process of trying to look for a city manager," Elizondo said. "As soon as the new elected council members are sworn in, they should get a copy of all the resumes and have a list of 10 finalists for the next meeting."
With five candidates seeking four council seats, Elizondo said she should be elected because of the experience she can bring to the council.
"I'm the most tenured council member at this point. I bring the most experience to the council. I have always been a team player, and I've always voted for what I thought was best for the city," Elizondo said. "I've always remained professional, and I will continue to be a voice for the City of Alice. I will continue to vote on issues whether they are popular or unpopular, with the best interest of the city in mind."