Two candidates vie for Lampasas City Council seat
And Place 4 Lampasas City Council incumbent TJ Monroe believes that is the goal of council members.
“I feel strongly that those are our responsibilities to the city and its residents, and we need to get back to doing more of that,” she said.
In her bid for a second term on the council, Mrs. Monroe said Lampasas has a lot to offer, and she feels good about how the community presents itself.
A member of Vision Lampasas! and Preservation Lampasas, the councilwoman said sitting on those local boards gives her a good perspective of what to look for in preserving the community as well as how to move forward.
“I am an interested citizen with a desire to give back to the community,” Mrs. Monroe said. “And I can’t complain if I’m not willing to help effect change.”
A former business owner, Mrs. Monroe said she empathizes with small business owners and their plight in today’s economy.
“Cities have only so much money available, though they should do all they can to help small businesses thrive,” she said. “And residents need to step in as well. We need to support our businesses by buying local, hiring local and contracting locally when possible.”
The City Council encourages businesses to establish in Lampasas, Mrs. Monroe said. Such was the case in a recent attempt to draw a large employer to the community.
“The city, county, school district and Lampasas Economic Development Corp. all worked together to entice the business to come here,” she said. “And while they chose to go elsewhere because of better incentives, I don’t look at this as a failure. It was a learning experience, and it proves that local entities can work together for the good of everyone.
“We need to continue to identify other companies looking for a place to open,” Mrs. Monroe said. “We have a lot to offer here, and we need them to see that. Maybe the next company will be the one.”
As for working with the county toward construction of a new fire station, Mrs. Monroe said she voted for it because she believes it is what community members wanted.
Mrs. Monroe and her husband, Gary, toured the current fire station, and she said it is inadequate, especially for as much time as personnel spend on the premises.
“That building was never intended to be a fire station, and it lacks a lot of amenities that someone who works as many hours as they do need to have.”
And while the search continues for a new city manager, the incumbent council member said that official should come from outside the area.
“A person new to the area can come in here and look at Lampasas with fresh eyes,” Mrs. Monroe said. “I want someone with a vision who can take us into the future without getting bogged down in the day-today operations of the city.”
Other qualifications she hopes to see in a new city manager include someone who can communicate with all citizens, and especially city employees.
“We need someone who isn’t afraid to take charge and be in command,” she said.
Mrs. Monroe said she hopes to be elected to a second term because she will do all she can to help Lampasas become a more viable community “where our children and grandchildren don’t have to go elsewhere to get a job and to raise a family.
“I am in favor of anything to do with family-type activities, including recreation and school activities,” she said. “It is important to keep the family unit as a whole.”
In addition, Mrs. Monroe said shoring up existing businesses and enticing other businesses to come to Lampasas is important for the viability of a community. “That helps bring in more jobs that will help our children decide to stay here.”
The council incumbent also believes bringing in Fort Hood personnel to visit, shop and eat is a plus for the community.
“We need to encourage them to come here to spend their money and consider retiring here,” Mrs. Monroe said. “While we do have a lot to offer casual tourists, we need to think more long term.”
The account manager for Bluebonnet Health Care Management, Mrs. Monrie said she hopes to win a second term in the upcoming election.
“I encourage people to get out and vote in May,” she said. “Voting is a privilege, and I want people to take advantage of it. Not everyone has that privilege.
“Whether you vote for me or not, the important thing is to vote. Period.”