HOUSTON (KTRK) -- Bill King is the one candidate whose been mayor before -- of Kemah that is. King says that previous executive experience is an advantage.
The attorney and entrepreneur says the top three issues facing the city are: worsening street conditions, crime and budget problems.
King doesn't support Rebuild Houston, the city's pay-as-you-go street and drainage program.
"Number one, they are not doing what they said they we're going to do with the money, that's the most significant thing. But also, this whole pay-as-you-go idea doesn't work; hardly anybody in the United States uses it. You can't afford to put off these projects while you save up the money to do it," King said.
So what's his solution?
"We do a bond program like we did for a 180 years, and that way, the citizens get to decide which projects are going to be done and how much we are going to spend in them," he said.
King wants more officers on the street, and the Houston Police Department's troubled crime lab possibly shutdown.
"And we're just not doing a very effective job of dealing with it. According to HPD statistics, we only caught 6 percent of the burglars last year, only 15 percent of the robbers. Those are well below national averages, they're absolutely unacceptable and we've got to do a much better job in that area."
City employee pensions are straining the budget, and King says he has a fix.
"We need to do what private industry did 20 or 30 years ago. We need to move to defined contribution plans. We need to move to a plan that does that in a fair way, that doesn't take away benefits that have already been earned. But certainly new employees we need to move to defined contribution plans as soon as we can," King said.
You can watch the full Bill King interview online below. We will profile the mayoral candidates leading up to the first televised mayoral debate. ABC-13 is co-hosting the debate with Univision on September 10. We will live stream the debate on our website at 6pm that evening and broadcast it on ABC-13 at 10:35pm that same night.
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