Gary Klepperich is a candidate running for Place 4 on the Port Aransas City Council. Following is a summary of remarks he made at Candidates’ Night on Thursday, April 14.
The remarks came in his prepared opening and closing statements and also when he, with other candidates, randomly drew questions from a bucket and gave impromptu responses.
Klepperich said he liked Port Aransas so much that he moved to town from the Dallas-Fort Worth area six years ago to make it his “forever home.”
He said he is a former marine and has worked as a professional community association manager for the past 23 years.
“I believe I bring a wealth of knowledge, working with municipalities,” he said. “I also work on a state and national level with the Community Associations Institute.”
Following is one of the two questions that he drew:
“The beach is one of the most important features of Port Aransas. Issues range from parking to litter to management of the roadway and seaweed to making sure we have enough well-trained lifeguards. Do you feel the beach is being managed well by the city? Why, or why not? If you think beach management needs to be improved, how should that happen?”
Klepperich responded that he believes the city has done a good job of grading beach sands and keeping the place clean.
He said he is concerned about problems with beach access due to traffic congestion. He singled out Beach Access Road 1A.
“It’s a bottleneck for emergency services,” he said.
Klepperich also drew this question:
“Golf carts over the past several years have become part of the fabric of life in Port Aransas. Many people love them. But that love isn’t universal. The city has created rules and ordinances specifically to try to keep carts under control. And cart rental businesses say they regularly advise customers on the rules. But we still see underage drivers, drinking and driving and carts traveling on State Highway 361, where they are illegal. Police have worked to enforce laws on carts. Should more be done to alleviate the issues created by golf carts?”
Klepperich said he loves his golf cart. But some folks treat carts as toys and don’t obey the law, he said.
Police should deal with golf carts more strictly, “not just for safety for our visitors, but for us,” Klepperich said.
“The law is the law, and we can’t be afraid to enforce the law even if it might cost us some tourist dollars to do so,” he said.