Candidate for Goliad County judge offers needed leadership
By Ernest Alaniz - Guest Column
Feb. 11, 2018 at 5:57 p.m.
My name is Ernest Alaniz. I am running for County Judge in Goliad County. My experience in the drilling industry as drilling engineer, drilling superintendent and drilling manager have given me the management tools, operational and technical skills to manage Goliad County. Managing budgets of $250 million to $350 million and daily costs of $1 million has given me the financial background to manage the county budget.
The most important reason for running is that Goliad County is facing some very serious financial issues. Multiple years of deficit budgets have depleted our treasury and caused our taxes to rise to the maximum amount. This is unacceptable to me and, I believe, to most of the citizens of Goliad County.
I feel our current Commissioners Court is not being proactive in addressing this issue. We have reached the limit to the cost-cutting measures that can be made without suffering loss and quality of county services.
Our Commissioners Court has failed in its major responsibility to seek ways to cut costs and help make the county government more efficient to relieve the tax burden on its citizens.
The county does not need to be doing anything but its core responsibilities, which are:
• Providing for the safety and well-being of its citizens.
• Providing for infrastructure necessary for its citizens and for future business and industrial growth.
• Maintaining the necessary administrative functions to manage the county requirements.
Anything else is superfluous, and new and innovative ways to reduce costs on these services must be considered. Two things that immediately come to mind are consolidations of services and outsourcing services.
I feel that outsourcing part of the EMS service, implementing the Unit Road System and reducing county bureaucracy to the minimum allowed by law should all be considered. My experience dictates that all new measures considered should have a cost/benefit analysis done and also be analyzed carefully to ensure critical interrelations between services are not being compromised.
I feel a dedicated economic development effort is needed to increase our tax base and relieve the burden on Goliad taxpayers. The county has been relying on the Coleto Creek power plant to provide the major part of its revenue. The plant is currently facing severe pressure from environmental interests. The result has been loss of revenue from the plant. The only other industry in the county has been a gas plant built to handle Eagle Ford gas. No other industry has located to Goliad County. Consequently, the biggest issue facing Goliad is lack of economic growth.
Unfortunately, this effort will not give immediate results. This is why it is imperative that the above measures be explored and those that show promise be implemented immediately. We can no longer stand idly by and expect prosperity to suddenly appear. The County must actively pursue economic development to ensure our future is secure.
Goliad's problems are not insurmountable; however, it will take strong leadership, a proactive Commissioners Court and an electorate that insists changes be made.
I have the experience, tools and skills to provide the leadership. I humbly ask for your vote.
Ernest Z. Alaniz is a Republican candidate for Goliad County Judge. He may be contacted at email@example.com.