LISTEN: Marfa Municipal Elections Forum

Early voting starts Monday, April 22nd, 2019 and closes Tuesday, April 30th, 2019.

Election day is Saturday, May 4th, 2019.

Four out of the five candidates running for a position in Marfa’s municipal election discussed their qualifications and answered questions before an audience of about 100 at the U.S.O. building Monday night.

Up for election are two available seats on the Marfa City Council. Challengers Lissa Castro and Yoseff Ben-Yehuda joined incumbent council members Brit Webb and Irma Salgado. Challenger Raul Lara was not present for the forum. 

Also up for election is the mayoral position. Incumbent Mayor Ann Marie Nafziger is being challenged by current city council member Manny Baeza. However, Baeza was unable to attend Monday’s forum.

Over the course of 90 minutes, candidates answered questions on affordable housing, large-scale music festivals, and a municipal homestead exemption for property taxes.

You can hear Monday’s forum in its entirety here. Below you’ll find highlights, including the time you can hear that question or moment.

  • Candidate introductions: 1:20 – 9:45
  • Question 1:  What is your position on large-scale music festivals? 9:50 – 15:50
  • Question 2: What are your thoughts on a municipal homestead exemption, and what are your thoughts on property taxes generally? 16:23 – 22:45
  • Question 3: Should Marfa extend late-night drinking hours for local businesses? 22:53 – 30:10
  • Citizen questions, 30:50 – 51:40
  • Closing statements, 52:30 – 58:00
  • Mayor Nafziger opening statement, 59:07 – 1:02:22
  • Question 1: Citizens and council members have remarked the Mayor’s office is slow to respond to e-mails. Additionally, council members were not consulted concerning their priorities in the lead up to last year’s budget-writing process. Can you explain this? 1:03:00 – 1:04:58
  • Question 2: What have you done in your two years to address municipal infrastructure neglect? 1:05:18 – 1:07:23
  • Question 3: Can you provide examples of how you hope to strike a balance between regulation and creating an inviting environment for housing and business development? 1:07:54 – 1:09:46
  • Citizen questions, 1:10:40 – 1:21:28
  • Mayor Nafziger closing statement, 1:29:31 – 1:23:58

A comprehensive West Texas election guide can be found here.

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