San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

September 16th, 2009
SMABOR endorses two

STAFF REPORT

The first high-profile endorsement of the San Marcos city council election came out Wednesday, when the San Marcos Area Board of Realtors (SMABOR) threw its support behind Monica Garcia and Ryan Thomason.

SMABOR said it made its selections “after careful consideration,” but did not include on its announcement a rationale for its selections.

Garcia, a political newcomer, is challenging incumbent John Thomaides for the Place 6 city council seat. Thomaides is running for his third term. Anita Fuller, another political newcomer, also is in the race.

Thomason is running for the Place 5 seat being vacated by Pam Couch, who declined to seek re-election. However, Couch is backing Thomason as his treasurer of record. Long-time local activist Lisa Marie Coppoletta also is in the race, as is local businessman Shaune Maycock.

Thomason is a SMABOR member and was allowed to vote on the endorsements.

The election for the two San Marcos city council seats is scheduled for Nov. 3.

In another other campaign development, Texas State student John Carl Nesselhauf has dropped out of the race. Nesselhauf was on the Place 5 ballot.

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0 thoughts on “SMABOR endorses two

  1. SMABOR is a “high profile” endorsement?

    In any event, I don’t think anyone should be surprised to see SMABOR back one of their own. It would have been news for them NOT to endorse Thomason.

    I am a little shocked to see them endorse Garcia…not that it will matter come election day.

  2. SMABOR endorsed Kim Porterfield and named the mayor their 2007 citizen of the year. Fred Terry is also a member I believe.

    Just some background, for anyone wondering what a SMABOR candidate might look like in office.

  3. Sour grapes; SMABOR has as much a right to an opinion as any of you. Heaven forbid anyone not recognize Thomaides as royalty fit to decide when I water, who I neuter, where I live and what I should pay for.

  4. I didn’t say anything about their endorsements, or the sitting officials they support. I thought, particularly in light of the article stating that they gave no explanation for their endorsements, it might be helpful to see who they like.

    It sounds like you’re the one with the sour grapes issue. Heaven forbid anyone voice an opinion that isn’t in line with yours, your highness.

  5. According to their website, SMABOR is a non-profit organization. Isn’t there a rule against non-profits getting involved in politics – or is that just for charities?

  6. There are different classifications of non-profits. I believe 503(c) organizations are not allowed to get into politics. I have no idea if SMABOR is a 503(c), but I can’t think of a classification they would fall under, in that group, off the top of my head, so I suspect they are not.

  7. Haughty Ted, you always position your posts as neutral comments from an enlightened repository of knowledge. A reader would have to suspend reason to take your post without the tone of voice with which you no doubt typed it. I’m not buying the games; we’ve all got biases, some of us don’t hide them.

  8. You can read anything into it that you want. If you have a better way to present the information, I am all ears. If you have a case to make that the sitting officials endorsed by the SMABOR do not give an indication of what they look for in a candidate, again, I am all ears.

    I apologize for always trying to position my posts as neutral, although I would disagree with such a blanket statement. I never had anything neutral to say about our schools, for example.

    As for the “enlightened repository of knowledge,” it is not as though I cite off-the-wall sources or make unsubstantiated claims. If a discussion interests me, I go get more information. Usually, I get it from the source already cited in the discussion/article. That seems like a pretty common sense way to learn about anything.

    Honestly, there is no game here. You may want there to be and you’re welcome to interpret my comments any way you choose. I’m not losing any sleep over your opinion of me.

  9. BTW, if I were “playing games,” I would have left the concern about non-profits participating in politics sit out there, unanswered.

  10. SMABOR’s Government Affairs committee considers many different aspects of a Candidate before making a final recommendation to its Board. Due diligence is certainly at the core of the decision making process. Our members raise money each year in combination with monies from the Texas Association of Realtors PAC, our state level governing body, in order to support Candidates at the local level that are in line with our mission as an organization. I would be more than happy to discuss our endorsements in detail with any concerned citizens of this great community.

    Also (FYI) Ryan Thomason was in no way involved in the endorsement decision making process as incorrectly mentioned in the article.

    Monica M. McNabb
    SMABOR Government Affairs Chair 2007, 2008, 2009

  11. I’m pretty sure Monica and Billy McNabb don’t live in the City Limits and can’t vote, as is true for many of the members of SMABOR. They live in one of the neighborhoods that was disannexed by Mayor Bob and his cohorts a few years back..
    The fact that SMABOR is supporting someone who has never served on a board or commission in this town, has no track record, and was hand-picked by the Mayor is completely predictable.

  12. There are many stakeholders in council elections who live outside the city limits. You don’t have to live in an incorporated area to have an interest, just to vote.
    Many people like that Ms. Garcia is an outsider with fresh ideas and a different perspective — like a young Thomaides. Her lack of track record can be weighed against a proven advocate for expansive City government — or an old Thomaides.

  13. I know for a fcat that Ryan Thomason cast a vote to endorse himself at the meeting, which negates Monica’s claim that he “was in no way involved in the endorsement decision making process as incorrectly mentioned in the article”..
    whatever.

  14. There certainly are stakeholders who live outside the city limits, but it is not the role of our elected officials to look out for their interests, except where those interests are in line with the interests of the citizens they represent.

    That being said, the inclusion of non-residents in an organization does not invalidate its endorsement of candidates. If their mission (which I could not find, or I would add more to my “enlightened repository of knowledge”) is in line with your goals, then consider supporting their candidates. If it is not, then consider supporting another candidate. Likewise, if their past candidates have done a good or bad job (in your opinion), then let this influence your opinion. Where the members live doesn’t in and of itself make their position good or bad.

    I hope that wasn’t so neutral as to offend anyone.

  15. SMABORS’s Government Affairs Committee did not make any decisions at the Debate. Ryan Thomason was not present nor privy to any discussion/conversations on the issue which were held privately.

    Mayor Bob and his cohorts did not de-annex my neighborhood, as the neighborhood I live in has never been annexed nor de-annexed. Additionally, the City Council at that time voted unanimously to de-annex certain area in South West San Marcos.

    Please direct any further correspondence regarding any of the issues above to me directly.

    I look forward to a local debate season defined by fresh ideas, innovative concepts and integrity.

  16. Directly- whatever you say, Monica.
    I have no idea what I’m talking about, even though I was a vocal proponent of the annexation in 2003-04, went to every associated meeting(bloody circus)for a year and a half and got into flame wars with you and your husband in the Letters section of the Record. Yeah, good times.

    And the folks who witnessed Ryan Thomason being asked to come vote on the SMABOR endorsement after the debate in the “private meeting” are wrong as well. They just made it up.

    Integrity. again, whatever.

  17. Man, CONA is going to be a GREAT organization with Chris involved!

    Chris, you kinda, sorta, indirectly, passively right on your assessment of Ryan Thomason and his involvement in the endorsement process. SMABOR, like many other associations, has a government affairs committee. In such organizations, it is usually the responsibility of the Gov. Committee to make recommendations to the board on political endorsements. The board then votes whether to accept the Gov. Committee recommendations, or go a different direction.

    In this case, here is ACTUALLY what happened…

    SMABOR held the debate and after the debate, they took a poll of the membership in attendance to get a feel of what the membership thought of the candidates and the potential endorsements. Since Ryan is a member of SMABOR, naturally, he voted for himself. This poll, however, is just to get a feel for what the membership thinks and is not official in any capacity. This is where Chris is right.

    The Gov. Affairs committee then meets, deliberates, and votes on their recommendation to the board. Ryan was not involved in that vote in any capacity. The SMABOR board of directors then voted on the recommendations of their Gov. Affairs Committee and made the only official endorsement. Ryan was not involved in that vote, either. This is where Monica is completely right.

    So, in a nutshell, Ryan, as a member of a private organization, voted in a non-binding, unofficial, information only poll, to choose himself as the candidate to best represent the interests of the organization. Then, at a future date and time, the Gov. Affairs Committee and then the Board of Directors voted on the official endorsement which Ryan had not involvement in.

    BTW, just for the record…I am not a member of SMABOR and am just a friend of Ryan’s. After reading these claims, I called him directly and asked him exactly what the story was.

    Besides, other than Chris’ hatred for Monica and her trying to claim Monica lied, what exactly does it matter what a private organization does??

  18. @COS:

    First off, thanks for the clarification of Thomason’s role in the voting process. I would argue, though, that the type of vote he cast for himself is ultimately irrelevant, since SMABOR wasn’t going to pass on the opportunity to support one of its own.

    Secondly, since it’s a tax exempt organization, it is in the public interest to know what SMABOR is up to. Politics at the local level is an ugly beast, but I for one would prefer that organizations that receive the benefit of tax-free operation be above the fray (right, ACORN?)

  19. According to their website, SMABOR is a 501(c)6 non-profit membership organization. That is a little different than a 501(c)3 such as a church. With a 501(c)6, donations are not deductable as charitable contributions. Membership fees can be deducted as a business expense, however.

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