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5 San Antonio City Council Districts Will Head To Runoff Elections

Joey Palacios
Texas Public Radio

District 1

District 1 will go to a runoff between longtime councilman Roberto Treviño and challenger Mario Bravo. This is Treviño's final eligible term. Treviño led by about 45% of the vote.

The election’s political issues were largely dwarfed by a deadly global pandemic and February’s deadly winter storm.

Treviño has been a critic of SAPD’s response to the city’s positions on addressing the unhoused population in San Antonio, as well as its posture on the Alamo Plaza redevelopment. He was removed from the city’s planning commission over his rigid support of removing the Cenotaph monument from the Plaza grounds.

He supported the citizen-led effort to remove collective bargaining rights from the police union, telling TPR “accountability is non-negotiable.”

Bravo made an unsuccessful bid for Bexar County Commissioner in 2018 against Paul Elizondo.

Bravo told TPR that addressing the unhoused population and reforming CPS Energy were two of his chief concerns in the race. He was critical of aspects of the current police contract, but didn’t say he was for or against Proposition B, which would strip the police union of its ability to collectively negotiate if it passes.

Two years ago, Councilman Treviño won outright over his challenger Justin Holley with a more than 40 percentage point lead.

District 2

Twelve candidates are vying for the council seat currently held by Jada Andrews-Sullivan, who was born and raised in District 2. Andrews-Sullivan took office on June 19, 2019, after defeating Keith Toney in a runoff election.

Challenger Jalen McKee-Rodriguez led the race with about 26% of the vote. The race will go to a runoff election against incumbent Andrews-Sullivan.

San Antonio’s District 2 encompasses a large portion of the city’s East and Northeast Sides. Among the important issues for District 2 are economic development and police reform

There are 67,656 registered voters in District 2. In the last election for City Council, 8.6% of registered voters participated.

District 3

There will be a runoff election in District 3 after a dozen candidates split the vote.

There was a large field of candidates vying to represent San Antonio's largest City Council district. Twelve people ran for the seat to represent District 3. The incumbent, Rebecca Viagran, is not among them. She has served the maximum of four terms on City Council and cannot run again.

Viagran’s sister, Phyllis Viagran, is among the dozen candidates running for this seat. She received about 22% of votes, and Tomas Uresti followed with nearly 15%.

Also running, Rodolfo “Rudy” Lopez, Mark Vargas Jr., Rafael Vela, Angela Cardona, Walter Murray, Ted Gonzalez, Katherine Herrera-Garza, Steve Valdez, Marcello Martinez and Diana Flores-Uriegas.

Most of the candidates answered questions about their experience and their priorities for their district in the TPR San Antonio Voter Guide.

District 3 spans 84 square miles spread out on the South and Southeast sides of the city. Candidates have expressed concern about the area’s food deserts, aging housing stock, infrastructure that has fallen into disrepair, public safety and the “digital divide,” including lack of wifi access for many people who live there.

District 4

First-term councilwoman Dr. Adriana Rocha-Garcia has won her re-election to represent the southwest side on the San Antonio City Council for another two years. She earned nearly 70% of the vote.

Rocha-Garcia, who is an Assistant Marketing Professor at Our Lady of the Lake University, currently serves on multiple City Council committees including the Community Health & Equity committee. In a TPR survey of candidates, Rocha Garcia said she wants to make it a priority to create a policy that creates stricter penalties for illegal dumping.

She filled the seat left vacant by exiting councilman Rey Saldana in 2019.

District 5

The race to represent District 5 will head to a runoff this summer. Teri Castillo led with about 30% of the vote, and she will face Rudy Lopez in the runoff.

Creating and training for jobs that pay higher wages, affordable housing and education are the most debated issues in District 5 race.

Protecting neighborhoods from gentrification and repairing aging infrastructure are other top concerns.

The city’s poorest City Council district is located between downtown and Lackland Air Force Base, with Culebra Road its northern boundary and Southcross Boulevard its southern boundary.

According to city statistics, little more than one-third of residents in the district have a high school degree and only 10% have a college degree.

The annual per capita income is slightly more than $13,000.

Eleven candidates are vying to replace incumbent Councilwoman Shirley Gonzales who maxed out her term limits of eight years.

The candidates include Anthony Gres, a produce business owner; Jason Mata, who has worked for nonprofit organizations and in business and construction management; Ray Garza, a retiree who is active in community organizations; Irma G. Barron, a former high school teacher and small business operator; Teri Castillo, a public housing and tenant rights advocate; Paul Yañez, an immigration attorney for Catholic Charities and former legislative assistant to State Senator Leticia Van De Putte; Marie Crabb, a realtor; Rudy Lopez, president of the Thompson Neighborhood Association and retired civilian employee of the San Antonio Police Department; Norberto "Geremy" Landin, liason for the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Marketing and Communication Board; Ricardo Moreno, a Harlandale Independent School District Board Member; and Jesse Alaniz, a former board member of the HISD

District 6

District 6 Councilwoman Melissa Cabello Havrda won her race with about 55% of vote. District 6 encompasses most of San Antonio's far West Side and neighborhoods like Alamo Ranch.

She currently serves as chair of the Public Safety Committee which oversees the San Antonio Police and Fire Departments.

In a TPR survey, Cabello Havrda said she was most proud of accomplishments including infrastructure improvements in her district; a priority she first drew attention to in her first campaign two years ago.

Cabello Havrda first won her seat in 2019 when she ran for the position left open by former councilman Greg Brockhouse who made an unsuccessful bid for mayor that year.

For her new term, Havrda said she would like to readdress how the city pays for sidewalk repairs and try to remove the bulk of the burden that is placed on homeowners.

District 7

Councilwoman Ana Sandoval will continue to represent District 7 for her third term after defeating a lone challenger this year. Sandoval received about 71% of the vote.

Sandoval is currently the chair of the Community Health and Equity Committee which serves as an overseer to the San Antonio Metropolitan Health District and city’s office of sustainability.

Sandoval told TPR she would like to see the creation of a Community Empowerment Team and a policy that “would leverage city resources and services across its departments to maximize improvements in a neighborhood.” She described that as following-up after street repairs with other city departments such as Neighborhood and Housing Services to provide resources for homeowners or renters.

Sandoval’s lone challenger this year was Patricia Ann Varela.

District 8

District 8 Councilman Manny Pelaez will start his third term as councilman after receiving about 60% of votes. The Northwest Side councilman faced four challengers.

In addition to his City Council committee appointment, Pelaez has served as a former trustee of VIA Metropolitan Transit, and former Chairman of the Brooks City Base Board of Directors.

In TPR’s candidate survey, Pelaez said he would like to see a review of how municipal regulations are additional costs for homebuilders within the city in order to make home construction more affordable.

District 9

District 9 Councilman John Courage was first elected to council in 2017. He received 47% of the vote and will face challenger Patrick Von Dohlen in the runoff.

District 9 encompasses the city’s northside from the San Antonio International Airport to far north Stone Oak neighborhoods.

During his time in office, Courage said he had been most proud of authoring a homestead exemption in 2019.

For the next council term, Courage told TPR in a candidate survey he wants to create a council consideration request — a method of creating a new city ordinance or policy — to establish a city wide speed limit for residential streets of 25 MPH.

District 10

District 10 Councilman Clayton Perry will get a third term in office after leading with 54% of votes. The City Council’s often lone conservative vote survived a challenge from four candidates this cycle.

Perry represents most of the city’s northeast side where politics can often skew to the right of center. He joined the council in 2017 among several other current council members. During his time in office Perry has served on multiple public boards including being a tri-chair of the Military Transformation Task Force and on the Metropolitan Planning Organization.

The councilman told TPR in a candidate survey he would like to see the creation of a "rental assistance" to small businesses that were impacted by the COVID pandemic as the city recovers from its economic impacts.

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