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Kenneth Perkins

Chron overview of District B

CM Jerry Davis has three opponents in his first re-election. Since I’ve interviewed CM Davis and one opponent, Kathy Blueford Daniels, here’s what the article says about the other two hopefuls.

CM Jerry Davis

CM Jerry Davis

Each candidate claims to have the best vision and track record to address the many challenges facing the district: high poverty, low graduation rates, crime, abandoned homes, flooding, illegal dumping and decaying streets.

“It’s bad,” said Perkins, 54, who was born and raised in the district and works as a reserve officer for the police department and a security consultant. “People are afraid to go out because there’s so much criminal activity.”

As councilman, Perkins said he would start a “dialogue” among ministers, community leaders, educators and business owners about how to improve the district.

“We need jobs and education programs for our kids,” said Perkins, who thinks Davis has not acted quickly enough to address deteriorating roads and other issues.

Joseph, 34, said he was inspired to run again because of “the public’s dissatisfaction with the current administration,” including what he describes as Davis’ “lack of experience” negotiating, which he said has cost the district millions in capital improvements. Joseph, who founded an organization that helps increase access to youth programs and affordable housing for low and moderate income residents, said his résumé indicates he could better “leverage sources and resources in the community through partnerships and collaborations.”

If elected, Joseph said he would work to create more jobs and expand a program he started to combat illegal dumping by getting more burned-out street lights replaced.

My interview with CM Davis is here, and my interview with Daniels is here. I didn’t interview the other two candidates, but there are written Q&As out there with them – Texas Leftist with Perkins, Texpatriate with Joseph. The Chron endorsed Davis, and I largely agreed with their view of the race. Davis is a recent returnee to the district, having lived in Pearland for some years before moving back for the 2011 election. He faces some resistance in the district because of that, which is something I can understand. I also think that should be more of a 2011 issue than a 2013 one, as he has done a good job on Council. We’ll see what the voters think.

The non-filers

We are now more than a week beyond the deadline to file campaign finance reports for City of Houston elections. The following candidates for city office have not yet filed a campaign finance report for July:

Michael Williams, At Large #2

Griff Griffin, At Large #2

Joe Edmonds, At Large #5

Kenneth Perkins, District B

Randy Locke, District C

Edmonds sent out a press release announcing his intent to run in May. That’s the last I’ve heard from him. He has no website or Facebook page that I can find. If he’s since decided not to run, he wouldn’t be the first person to follow that path.

Edmonds is a first time candidate. Everyone else on that list has run for office before; Griff, Perkins, and Locke all ran for Council in 2009, while Williams is an incumbent HCC Trustee. Griff managed to file all three finance forms last time, while Locke filed his 30 day and 8 day reports (he may not have been officially in the race as of July 15, 2009), and Perkins never filed anything. At this point, I doubt any of them will file anything for July. I don’t know why this is – with the possible exception of Edmonds, it’s not because they have not engaged in any campaign activity. I’m not a stickler for certain things in candidates. You don’t have to live in the district (unless the law requires it), and you don’t have to have a spotless voting record for me to consider your candidacy. I’ll break a tie against you if it comes down to that, but I won’t disqualify you. But I have to say, anyone who wants to have some say in the city’s finances had better damn well be able to explain why they were unable or unwilling to file this form on time. I really don’t think that’s asking for much.