EL PASO, Texas - Cassandra Hernandez Brown and Jaime Barceleau will face off in a runoff election for the District 3 seat on El Paso City Council.
City Rep. Emma Acosta's decision to run for mayor left her seat in the East Central District vacant.
Five candidates are running for the position. The candidates include: Hernandez Brown, Barceleau, Elias Camacho, Casey Williams and Louis Pellicano.
Three of the candidates are retired. The other two hold full-time jobs. All have been hitting the streets campaigning for months.
Cassandra Hernandez Brown is the deputy director at Dynamic Workforce Solutions. She also served as a legislative aide to previous council representatives: Susie Byrd (District 2), and Steve Ortega (District 7).
"What initially inspired me is the disappointment I had with our current city council. I really felt the bickering and the constant divisiveness really inspire me to be the leader to step up and be the leader that the constituents desperately need," Hernandez Brown said.
Casey Williams is a private practice immigration attorney who also serves on the city's Civil Service Commission.
He believes both positions make him uniquely qualified for the District 3 seat.
"I am the only person with any legal training. And because I have the most direct experience working in a leadership position with the city. And that's not present with any of the other candidates. If you elect a person whose job it is to fight for other people, you are advocating for and you will be voting for a person who will fight for you. I will fight for District 3. I will fight for the (district's) best interest. and I will be informed enough to with my legal expertise and training as an attorney to be able to hold the city to task," Williams said.
Louis Pellicano is retired, but worked as a vocational rehabilitation counselor at the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Pellicano disagrees with the current city council's decision to place the arena downtown.
"It should be placed either in a suitable location or at Cohen Stadium. We have the space there. Not only would you have the space you would allow the northeast to have some industry there. Not just certain parts of El Paso. It''s feasible, it's easier to get to Cohen Stadium than it is downtown," Pellicano said.
Jamie Barceleau, the former executive director for the Paso del Norte Children's Development Center, said more than half of the voters he has talked to are concerned about District 3's streets.
"They are talking about the streets, how fast the traffic is on the streets. The lack of street lights. The lack of beautification on some of the streets. We've got the area by Montwood and Viscount where the medians have not been beautified yet. That's what 55 percent of the people are talking about, the streets. And after that is taxes. And that is a joint conversation with taxes and spending," Barceleau said.
Elias Camacho, a retired El Paso Police Department detective, said voters he talked with want a representative to focus on public safety, utility bills and taxes. Transparency is something the candidate is promising voters.
"It's one of the things that I think is very important, because I am a strong believer that nothing lasts forever. When you hide something, when you lie about something, eventually it's going to come up and it's going to be worse. So, I've always been very transparent," Camacho said.