Thursday, April 10, 2008

George Van Horn 2008 Interview Township Director Woodlands Texas

Candidate Written Interview

1. What specifically do you personally expect to get out of being on the Township Board?

Good government. I will be a person who will represent all of the people of The Woodlands. I am committed to bringing the community together. Residents and business should all have their views heard. Everyone should be treated fairly and with respect

2. What are the primary resident values that you will use to prioritize your decision making for the villages?

Quality of life, delivery of an excellent level of services, improvement of property values. Making sure that staff is responsive to the needs of the residents.

3. What are the primary commercial values you will use to prioritize your decision making for the business community?

Responsible development. Making sure that growth continues in a way that maintains and improves our quality of life.

4. Do you believe that resident issues or commercial interests are going to be your biggest challenge?

I expect that more of the challenges will be resident issues because there is a great range of ages of the homes, locations and home values. In addition, the residential areas are larger users of our municipal services. Commercial development will have to happen in accordance with The Woodlands community standards.

5. What is your position on the future government of The Woodlands? For example, do you support incorporation?

I personally favor incorporation. However, I am aware that a number of residents are concerned that the cost of incorporation will outweigh the benefit. We need to do a cost-benefit analysis to resolve those questions.

6. What is your view of the relationship between the associations and the Township during and after transition?

During the transition, they should work together as partners. After the transition is completed, the Township will have assumed full responsibility. The associations will have completed their role. Government will be simplified.

7. What is your vision of maintenance services for the community in the transition and afterwards?

The community associations should maintain the level of services while they retain responsibility for them. As the Township assumes these responsibilities, they should review operations and improve the level of services as appropriate consistent with controlling costs.

8. What is your vision of the associations’ role in the future of The Woodlands?

The community associations’ functions are being assumed by the Township. After the transition period, I expect that the Village Associations will have a larger voice in behalf of the residents.

9. What changes would you like to see from our fire department over the next two years?

I would like to see the department’s response times be the best that are reasonably possible.

10. What are your ideas and vision for the tax structure for residents and businesses here?

Taxes should be as low as possible consistent with provision of the level of services that we have come to expect. To the extent that we can rely of sales taxes (the majority of which are paid by non-residents) this will allow us to lower property taxes.

11. What is your position on the parks, trees and amenities provided throughout The Woodlands? Also please add any relative comments on the development of the Village of Creekside Park?

We need to maintain and improve the parks and amenities in all of our Villages. Older facilities may need repairs while newer villages may require buildout to reach the existing community standards. Trees are at the heart of The Woodlands. They are a big reason why people come here to work and live. We need to enact and enforce measures to protect them.

12. If you have any additional statements you believe residents or storeowners should hear reflecting your personal commitment to their welfare, please try to enumerate in 50 words or less.

I am committed to carrying out the will of the people.
I campaigned for Propositions 1, 2 and 3 to free The Woodlands from annexation by Houston and Conroe. Now, I am campaigning for a smooth transition to our new form of government.

I am committed to bringing the community together.
I am comfortable in dealing with all parts of the community: homeowners, businesses, education, charitable, religious and government at all levels. I have a 15 year history of volunteer work with all these segments of our community.

I am professionally qualified.
I have skills developed through education and experience to deal with the issues facing The Woodlands. As a small business owner, he is in touch with the needs of The Woodlands homeowners and small businesses. I help homeowners and small businesses in obtaining real estate financing. I have an MBA in Finance. I have successfully managed multi-million dollar mergers.

The needs of the staffs of the Community Associations and The Woodlands Township should be taken into consideration.
Mergers are times of uncertainty for those who work in the organizations. We need to care for them so that they will stay motivated to provide the community with the highest level of professionalism.

Campaign Email: Send email to George's campaign mailbox

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Content approved for publication by George Van Horn

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