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D. A. CRAIG WATKINS PROVIDED THIS DISCIPLINARY ACTION REPORT AGAINST MIKE OROZCO
Prior to all partisan elections, the Dallas County Tejano Democrats send a questionnaire to all Democratic candidates. The responses are reviewed and submitted to the membership, which then votes on which candidates to endorse.
This page includes all the questions submitted, and Michael Orozco's responses.
1. Do you support the recently passed law that requires vehicles to be towed for those without insurance?
[For the purposes of this question, we are limiting the issue to the City of Dallas and suburban cities that have a towing ordinance].
There is no question that state law mandates all drivers to be insured. Removing them from the highways removes a threat to the public’s safety.
When I worked in the Constable’s Traffic division, I encountered on a daily basis persons of all races and colors driving without insurance coverage. Those persons are a financial disaster waiting to happen to someone else (not themselves, or they would have insurance).
Our towing policy will be based on the use of officer’s discretion and the use of County-approved towing services, with all fees going to the County budget and not my office.
2. Are you in favor of affirmative action policies as they relate to the hiring of government employees?
I believe that in many cases, affirmative action must be used to make up for long-term unfairness or impact on the public at large. But at the same time, it should be possible to set a deadline for requiring compliance with applicable law and remove affirmative action mandates.
3. Do you favor supporting community organizations that seek to improve the lives of the less fortunate? Do you have any personal experiences in this area?
I support people who volunteer their time, their skills and their money to support the less fortunate members of the American public and their communities.
Thankfully, my family has been successful in most of its endeavors and has not needed this type of assistance. We believe in supporting these groups with donations and even referral to services when possible.
I volunteer my services at a boxing gym in East Dallas that works with and trains children and young adults (9 to 20 years of age). The majority of the participants come from low-income househ
My wife and I own a business in Oak Cliff and donate cash and goods to community organizations.
4. Do you support or oppose efforts to make English the official language of the United States?
I oppose making English the official language. Our country has prospered for more than 200 years without this requirement.
The command of English is a means to success in this country. But at home, the ‘first-language’ of my children is Spanish. My 11 year old son did not start learning English until he was 4 years old, and my youngest daughter (5 years) just started to learn English at the same age.
5. How do you propose to make government services more accessible to Spanish-speaking residents? Please elaborate.
We will create brochures and websites that explain the processes and requirements of all our courts and services in English and Spanish.
6. Do you support or oppose changing the way your government position is currently run? What changes if any would you make?
In the case of this office, with all the issues that will be sitting on my desk when I am elected, I intend to have a transition team working with me to make sure we map out the problems, solutions and changes needed to make everything right. I have learned many things working in other divisions, and I will bring those ideas (not impose them capriciously) to the table and see what works in the circumstances.
I also intend to ask the County to conduct a top to bottom audit of this office and staff – financial, vehicle usage, tickets, services provided, etc. We will establish benchmarks of what are the proper numbers to achieve, and then work to make sure the staff (law enforcement and clerical) is trained in how to do their jobs the correct way, not just the way they did it before.
7. Would you give a firm commitment to support the creation of majority Latino city/state/federal districts in Dallas County after the 2010 redistricting?
I believe this is an achievable outcome of the 2010 Census and will offer my support to creating them.
8. If elected, would you make a firm commitment to rename a Dallas street to Cesar Chavez Blvd.? If not, what suggestions would you offer with respect to renaming a major Dallas thoroughfare after Cesar E. Chavez?
The Dallas City Council is set to approve the renaming of a portion of South Central Expressway as Cesar Chavez Boulevard on February 10, 2010. No further action is necessary.
9. What about your background do you believe better qualifies you for your position than your opponent?
I have over 13 years experience as a full-time Dallas County Deputy Constable. During that time, I took the initiative to work in each and every division of the Constable’s office – civil, warrants, writs, traffic enforcement, and truancy.
I hold a Master Peace Officers License from the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement Standards and Education, which is the highest level of certification.
Equally important, I hold a Bachelor of Science in Business Management from the University of Phoenix. My wife and I have successfully operated our own small retail store in the Oak Cliff area for almost ten years
This combination of professional training, education and management gives me a unique perspective in the operations of the office of Constable, and restore a level of respect and service back to this Precinct.
10. In what area do you think the city of Dallas needs the most improvement? What ideas do you have to realize these improvements?
The three things that come to mind are (in no specific order) – Development of Southern Dallas, improvement in City (and County) services in accordance with budget restrictions, and reinvigoration of the Dallas Independent School District.
Possible means to achieve – Better public / private / business / nonprofit coordination of projects, streamlined and improved permit application process (satellite offices), corporate / private sponsorship of program such as building expenses, volunteer mentoring, and upgrade of IT systems.
11. What do you believe you can do, if elected, to help with the education of youth?
Dallas County has a strong and efficient Truancy and Attendance Enforcement program, including Truancy Court where I currently serve. Our Constables support the program with the delivery of documents notifying parents of court dates. In many cases, this is the first time the parents have been made aware of their children’s failure to attend school.
This program is not a revenue generator; it is an ‘education generator’. This program is extremely important in getting students back into school and graduating, and making their parents part of the process.
12. What plans or ideas do you have for bringing business to Dallas, and for promoting economic development within underdeveloped sectors of the city?
If my Constable’s office can show we provide efficient and quick processing of legal documents, we can contribute to the can-do attitude many businesses seek. This would apply to all parts of my precinct.
I would make myself available with other officials to talk to companies considering moving to my part of Dallas.
13. If elected, what would you do to ensure that your constituents are directly involved in civic affairs?
As an elected Hispanic official, I will present a positive role model for others who may be considering public service in their community or as an elected office. I will make myself available to these groups as time permits to discuss my office and how I reached it.
More importantly, I will stress that civic involvement by the public is necessary to ensure we have good, honest and transparent governance.
15. With the national economic downturn, what would you do to make sure that working class families were not taken advantage of by banks, credit card companies, or collection companies?
While we serve hundreds if not thousands of legal documents to these families, we can also deliver flyers and literature about various social and governmental support programs available to families in these hard times.
For example, telling these individuals why it is so important to respond promptly to a small-claims lawsuit and notice through our proposed bilingual community information booklet.
16. With the immigration issue being at the forefront of national politics, do you think it's necessary for the city/ county/state to develop policies of its own, or is that an issue that should be left for federal and state government to decide?
I believe this is a federal issue. Local governments can only do so much, with limited resources, to deal with this issue.
17. Do you support or are you against local enforcement of federal immigration laws? Why?
From the law enforcement perspective as Constable, I will not condone or support Immigration and Nationality Act 287(g).
My oath of office holds me responsible for the enforcement of all federal, state and local laws. The active enforcement of federal immigration laws does not fall under the scope of the Constable’s office.
There will be instances, however, upon an on-view arrest, execution of a warrant and / or the execution of a civil order, the person will be found to be an illegal alien subject to arrest under federal law.
Equally important, our officers will be trained to recognize all valid forms of foreign identification, including the Mexican government’s “matricula” documentation.
18. Are you in favor or against immigration reform as proposed by President Obama? Why?
The administration's approach to this issue has been described as the "Three-Legged Stool": effective enforcement, improved legal/approval processes for workers and employers, and a "firm but fair way to deal with those who are already here."
I support the integration of illegal immigrants into our society, but we need to implement legal protections and enforcements in order to avoid the mistakes created by the 1986 amnesty program.
19. There is some indication that North Texas is in a water crisis. Do you support water conservation? What role do you believe the city council plays in developing a plan for long-term water supply and use?
I support – and practice – water conservation methods at home and work. The Dallas City Council is already promoting water conservation and no-grease-in-the-drain programs through public service announcements. Future water supply programs should be based on efficient use of new resources in Texas.
20. Do you support or oppose the Trinity River Project? If elected, what would you do to ensure that Dallas residents are directly involved in this economic development project?
This project was approved by the voters in 1998 and again in 2008.
I will support any programs or job fairs in my community, including the availability of my office and facilities for job-focused events on weekends.
25. Are you in favor of providing some form of financial incentives for governmental employees who are Spanish language proficient?
Yes, I support these programs.
26. What is your position on affordable housing?
It has always been an economic fact of life that affordable housing is important as groups move up the income ladder and let others take their places. I support having decent affordable housing that fits in with the surrounding communities.
27. What ides do you have to increase job opportunities in your district?
I am committed to working with communities and businesses that wish to organize job fairs.
But as a law enforcement agency, our primary goal will be to create a safe working environment for our precinct’s residents and workers. Then more businesses will consider moving to our area.
28. What low-income programs do you support?
CHIP, WIC, Parkland Hospital Community Services, Northwest Texas Legal Aid Foundation, Dallas Housing Authority and Dallas County vaccination programs.
29. How many minorities are paid workers on your campaign? How many Latinos? How many women?
My campaign has just one paid staff person, responsible for my website, graphics, database, editorial services and other campaign-related activities. The balance of my ‘team’ is composed of volunteers, split 70/30 male/female and 60/20/20 Hispanic/Anglo/Black
30. What activities do you have to increase Latino voter participation in your district?
During January 2010, my campaign crew passed out Voter Registration cards as they went out into the neighborhoods.
Restoring integrity to the office of Constable, Precinct 5 / Michael Orozco
The office of Constable in Precinct 5 is headed in the wrong direction. It is in need of change - you could even say ‘restoration’.
I promise I will restore Professionalism, Integrity and Efficiency to the office of Constable in Precinct 5.
I have a plan to do this. My plan is as simple as A – B – C.
A / Authority
The State of Texas and the Dallas County Commissioners Court grant Constables the authority to enforce criminal and civil law in a fair and unbiased manner.
There will be no more private business contracts or using county employees for political purposes. We will follow all the rules and obey the law to the letter.
There will be no more micromanaging of officers. We will give professional discretion back to the officers of Precinct 5.
B / Basics
The primary role of the Constable is the service of process, both criminal and civil, in an efficient and safe manner.
Once you fix the system, everything falls into place: Efficiency goes up, morale is improved and productivity is enhanced.
C / Crime
The Constable’s office is a law enforcement agency. Our focus will not only be the enforcement of civil law, but equally important, the enforcement of criminal law.
This can be done by restructuring the traffic division, developing a criminal investigations division, and creating partnerships with local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies.