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December 31, 2018
Dear Neighbors,
I hope you are enjoying the holidays! With 2018 wrapping up, I wanted to do something a little different for our newsletter. This week, I’m sharing my seven favorite moments from this past year. Odds are that you’ll recognize many of them. So, without further wait:
7 Favorite Moments from 2018
#1: District 7 Town Halls
To start the year right, the District 7 Office invited residents to two town halls—one at Jefferson High School and one at Braun Station Elementary. With the backdrop of our children's education, I delivered an update on my efforts at City Hall and, with representatives from City departments, my office connected attendees to City resources and listened to their input on the district’s direction.

Each September, City Council adopts a budget for the upcoming fiscal year. It’s an exciting time at City Hall and perhaps the most important time of the year for my council colleagues and I to make sure we’ve heard the community's priorities. That’s why in August I teamed up with Councilman Brockhouse to host a joint town hall on the proposed FY 2019 budget. It was there that I shared that the proposed budget included funding for a corridor study of Bandera Road and development of a new park in the Woodlawn Hills neighborhood, among other great items.

The town halls make the list because they were opportunities to ask, “What are your priorities?” and later, “Did I hear you right?” 
#2: Property Tax Appeal Workshops
I know homeowners have been in a crunch with rising property taxes. Though the City hasn't raised its tax rate, rapidly rising property appraisals have increased the tax burden on our homeowners and renters. The District 7 Office organized Property Tax Workshops to give residents the tools to understand and appeal their property taxes. We had such high demand, we held a total of four workshops.

The workshops make the list because of the impact. The District 7 Office heard from attendees that they had taken what they learned and successfully lowered their tax appraisals and saved hundreds as a result.
#3: Neighborhood Leadership Academy Graduation
District 7 is full of residents willing to serve their neighborhoods. It’s what prompted me to request the City hold a Neighborhood Leadership Academy (NLA) specifically for District 7 leaders. The NLA is a dynamic program that brings together community leaders to enhance their leadership and advocacy skills so they can help strengthen their neighborhoods. Participants graduate with an understanding of how different City services function and how to use them to improve their community.

After six months of sessions, 40 neighborhood leaders from 22 neighborhoods graduated from the NLA ready to strengthen their community. Each graduate received their at City Council Chambers.

It’s one of my favorite moments because the participants were so eager to learn!
#4: Back to School Bash
Student success relies on more than brainpower. Kids need good health, notebooks, and comfort in their appearance, too. So, with school on the horizon, the District 7 Office welcomed over 1,500 children to Place for Life Church to collect school supplies, received immunizations and haircuts. But that’s not all: this year, the office did something special and collected school supplies for teachers, too. It’s no secret that teachers often pay out of pocket to ensure their students have supplies and their classrooms are decorated. The District 7 Office wanted to make sure we did right by our educators, as well, by collecting supplies to offset those costs.

It ranks among my favorite moments because the community came through with contributions and, thanks to them, every child received a backpack full of school supplies! Also, because my middle school science teacher Mr. Guzman volunteered!
#5: Safety Summit
One of our priorities in District 7 is for everyone to feel safe in their neighborhood. That’s why the District 7 Office invited the Police and Fire Departments, Code Enforcement Officers, Animal Care Services, and home safety vendors to meet with residents for presentations and discussions on their own concerns.

The Safety Summit makes the list because of SAPD’s SAFFE Sergeant Ross’ top-notch jokes and safety strategies and because one of our neighborhood residents walked away with a full home camera system donated by Hawk Security Systems.
#6: Woodlawn Lake Park's
100th Birthday Party
The Westside’s most beloved park was donated to San Antonio in 1918. It was a community favorite from the very beginning and frequent site of dances, boat races, title fights, and movie screenings. I knew that we had to do something special for its one hundredth birthday, but I never thought so many people would join us! Over 3,000 people turned out to commemorate the park’s birthday with a screening of Coco and fireworks show.

The birthday party makes the list of favorites because it showed how much the community loves Woodlawn Lake Park. It also helped that there were free cupcakes.
#7: Holiday Tree Gatherings
In observance of the holidays, the District 7 Office placed holiday trees at both Woodlawn Lake and Nani Falcone Parks to bring out the community spirit alive and well in our district. In addition to neighbors, Santa Claus and Sparky the Fire Dog joined us to enjoy cookies, cocoa, and carols. Neighborhood leaders brought unique ornaments to represent their neighborhoods and placed them on the trees.

The tree gatherings earned their spot on the list for the warm environment they created for us to gather.
My team and I can't wait to renew our efforts in 2019! It promises to be a fruitful year. Stay tuned for more community gatherings next year!
Yours in public service,
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Office note: In observance of the holidays, the District 7 Office will be closed from December 20 to January 2 and open on January 3.
Our Office Staff

Office Hours
Note: Our offices will be closed in observance of the holidays from December 20 to January 3.
Brass Professional Center
4414 Centerview Dr #160

Monday - Friday:
9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Maury Maverick Library
8700 Mystic Park

By appointment only.
Please call 210-207-2727.