Monday Night Politics: Meet the Candidates forum features candidates for Dallas City Council Districts 6, 13 and 14

MATTHEW HIRST | 4/30/2019, 5:50 a.m.

The Dallas Examiner

Monday Night Politics – Meet the Candidates, presented by The Dallas Examiner, hosted its fifth of six forums at the African American Museum on April 8. The political forum featured candidates running for Dallas City Council Districts 6, 13 and 14 in the May 4 general election.

Each candidate was given two minutes for opening statements, followed by an interactive Q&A session with questions from the audience.

District 6 went first. Candidates in attendance were Monica R. Alonzo and Tony Carrillo. Incumbent Omar Narvaez was not.

Due to circumstances, opening statements for Alonzo and Carrillo are not available, but information on each candidate – a summary of top priorities for both – are as follows.

Alonzo: Keep the community and families safe. Bring down crime rates, violent crime especially, in District 6. Cut wasteful spending in the city of Dallas. Expand upon educative programs, such as pre-K and all day pre-K. Provide affordable housing solutions for the citizens of District 6, while continuing to facilitate economic development and growth.

Carrillo: Address the shortage of law enforcement personnel in Dallas. Utilize city facilities, like recreation centers, to host and promote events for District 6 teens in need. Demand accountability in the DISD budget. Make it a priority to help homeowners with housing repairs. Support organizations such as Soldiers for Christ, Big Brothers and Barrio Outcry that help address drug and alcohol abuse issues in the Dallas community.

The forum then opened up for questions from the crowd. Among topics covered were how candidates would garner votes from other council members and how they might vote or handle issues that aren’t particularly important to them in District 6, in addition to charter school moratoriums, housing vouchers and gentrification.

Question: On the topic of placing moratoriums on charter schools.

Carrillo: Some of the deals by DISD have been really bad. That Pinkston deal over there was really sad. All of this charter school development in West Dallas came in before I was here and I’m very disappointed. Having enough faith, we can probably put a stop to it [charter schools spreading through Dallas]. We’ve got to work really hard and I believe we can do it.

Alonzo: I’m a parent of a student from DISD, so I am very familiar with the Dallas Independent School District. Even though many say that there’s a lot going on, it’s a great independent school district. They’re doing a lot of good things, not only in the West Dallas area, but in the Northwest Dallas area, that we need to talk about, folks. We need to talk about the good, not just the bad … because there’s been a lot of great students coming from there. And I will share with you, there have been some projects that come through the city to help those independent school district students. Unfortunately, the representative that we have today has not implemented them.

Next was District 14 candidate, incumbent Councilman Philip Kingston. The other candidates, Warren Johnson and David Blewett, were not present.