The QueQue: Local races to watch: deal-makers and puppet masters, SA bleeding the "creative class", Violence Against Women Act Rollbacks
Published: May 16, 2012
Jones turned to none other than Bexar County District Attorney Susan Reed to criticize Wentworth's marionette theater. "I know political campaigns can be tough, but Wentworth's attacks on Elizabeth Ames Jones are exactly what's wrong with politics today," Reed says in a new ad for Jones. Reed charges Wentworth's ad works to "belittle all women," saying, "This woman is voting for that woman."
Chico v. Ramos: Jennifer Ramos easily won her second term on SA City Council last year, despite charges from her opponent that Ramos used her city office to grease the wheels for her employer, charges that led to an official ethics inquiry (Ramos came out with a slap on the wrist). Less than halfway through her second term, she left the post to challenge Democratic incumbent Chico Rodriguez for the South Side's Bexar County Commissioner Precinct 1 seat. The race had been notably venom-free until a Ramos mailer hit homes this past weekend, bashing Rodriguez for taking pay increases on the job while at the same time blaming him for under-staffing the Bexar County jail.
SA bleeding the "creative class"
Speaking to SA City Council members last week, SA2020 CEO Darryl Byrd lingered on a troubling metric. According to survey data, the young are decidedly less rosy about San Antonio than their older counterparts, particularly if they're transplants having lived here four years or less. "This is crucial," Byrd said. "Cities are fueled by young people, our economies are fueled by young, smart professionals continually circulating through our cities. … If we're not attractive, irresistibly attractive, then we're going to have trouble feeding those 21st century industries we say we want, like IT, cyber security, aerospace, biosciences, all those things."
There's a reason the topic weighed on Byrd's mind. Our Twitter feeds and Facebook pages clogged last month as folks across the city commiserated with former Current writer Callie Enlow's column on the Rivard Report (former longtime E-N editor Bob Rivard's new online venture), wherein she questions why her young "creative class" friends, the kind San Antonio says it wants to attract, keep ditching the Alamo City. Enlow identifies a few factors: despite recent improvements, SA still lags at providing career-oriented jobs to young professionals, and that SA's lack-luster social scene makes it hard for young singles to find like-minded friends and professional partnerships (or dates).
Byrd and other local notables got a primer in late April on why San Antonio's bleeding college graduates from some local college students themselves, when Trinity University economics professor Richard Butler and a group of his students delivered their report titled "Young Professionals in San Antonio: Opportunities for Growth" — Austin ranks second among the nation's largest 50 metros for 25- to 34-year-olds with at least a four-year college degree, while San Antonio ranks 46. The report says San Antonio lacks meaningful social and professional networks for young people, adding, "San Antonio has an unfortunate reputation of being a hard place for singles to live and to meet people."