A technical delay atop the Hays Street Bridge did not dampen City Councilman Alan Warrick’s (D2) enthusiasm Saturday afternoon as he officially launched his re-election bid.

Warrick waited until the sound equipment at the inaugural Freedom Block Party, which helped close out DreamWeek San Antonio, was fully operational before making his announcement.

“Everyone’s asking if I’m running. There’s no question: There’s more work to do on the Eastside of San Antonio,” Warrick told two crowds – one on the bridge, the other on the ground below. In all, he addressed more than 100 people during the block party’s early stages.

“But there’s no question that this is a much stronger community than when I started,” he said, “and there’s more advancement and more things to bring the people of District 2 together.”

Warrick, CEO of World Technical Services, is seeking a second term in office in the May 6 municipal elections. He first was elected to the Council in a December 2014 special election runoff, when he toppled then-incumbent Keith Toney.

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Credit: Kathryn Boyd-Batstone / San Antonio Report

Warrick outlasted Toney and Antonio Diaz in the May 2015 election. He said his re-election bid will include a focus on the four “zeroes” from his original campaign: “Zero vacant lots, zero murders, zero unemployment, and zero stray dogs.”

Acknowledging a rise in violent crime “that it is citywide,” Warrick said both the community and the police are doing what they can to reduce crime. He added that District 2 has made strides in all categories save for murders and that Shotspotter, a pilot program that helps police to respond quicker to gunfire in an area, lends “tangible, not just anecdotal” support in the fight against crime.

Toney is again challenging Warrick for the District 2 Council seat, along with attorney William “Cruz” Shaw, former chair of the City’s Zoning Commission, who announced his candidacy in December.

Warrick did not bring up either challenger in his brief announcement and instead emphasized his experience at City Hall and in the community.

“I’m here to give back and say thank you for what you’ve given me. You’ve made me a better person over these last two years, and I would love to have your support as City Councilman for the next two years,” Warrick said.

According to Shaw, many District 2 residents have said they want a stronger voice at City Hall.

“From the very beginning, I have said this race isn’t about me or my opponents,” Shaw told the Rivard Report. “This is about the community and the people we each hope to serve. I remain focused on providing a voice to the community, and working to find solutions to our most persistent challenges.”

Shaw has pledged to concentrate on issues such as crime, basic infrastructure, and economic development in the district.

“These are the things that matter to the residents, and that’s what I am focused on. I am here to listen, and provide the residents of District 2 a voice again,” he stated.

Toney, who announced his candidacy in late November 2016, is a Vietnam veteran and a school liaison officer for Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston.

“It’s time for a change in District 2 leadership, Toney said in response to Warrick’s official announcement. “We are prepared to bring back mature representation to the District 2 Council seat.”

Warrick said he welcomes endorsements, but that his campaign is not measured by which notable individuals or groups back his re-election bid.

“This isn’t about getting the San Antonio Express-News‘ endorsement, or anyone else’s,” he said. “People know I’m working hard to make District 2 a vibrant, wonderful place.”

Warrick’s announcement was scheduled to lead off the Freedom Block Party, which was originally billed as an official DreamWeek event. Due to concerns that DreamWeek and its lead planning organization, DreamVoice, would be politically affiliated with Warrick’s re-election bid, the Freedom Block Party was removed from the official DreamWeek event calendar.

Following an exchange with Warrick’s office, DreamVoice added a disclaimer to DreamWeek’s website: “DreamVoice/DreamWeek is in no way supporting any political candidate running for office.”

Edmond Ortiz

Edmond Ortiz, a lifelong San Antonian, is a freelance reporter/editor who has worked with the San Antonio Express-News and Prime Time Newspapers.