Republican Ben Buehler-Garcia filed a campaign finance Statement of Organization on 2/22/13 to challenge 2 term Councilmember Karin Uhlich in the Ward 3 race.
As a political newcomer he ran against incumbent Democrat Uhlich four years ago in 2009, and lost by 175 votes (33,782 to 33,607). Green party candidate Mary DeCamp got 4,429 votes in that three-way race. Uhlich was first elected in 2005 by defeating Republican incumbent Kathleen Dunbar in Ward 3.
Biography from the candidate:
Ben Buehler-Garcia is a 34 year resident of Tucson and Ward III. He first came to Tucson in order to attend the University of Arizona where he earned a degree in Public Administration with a Criminal Justice minor.
Ben has 25 years professional experience in Economic & Community development, serving 9 years in a management role at the Tucson Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce.
For the last 16 years he has been self-employed, providing Economic & Community Development Planning, Small Business Advocacy and Non-Profit Consulting Services.
A firm believer in volunteerism and community engagement, he has been recognized with the Copper Cactus Award for Community service for his role with organizations such as the United Way, Fox Tucson Theatre Foundation, the Arizona Children’s Foundation and the Tucson Community Cares Foundation.
He also volunteered 9 years with the City of Tucson Industrial Development Authority Board of Directors and 2 years as a member of the City of Tucson Economic and Workforce Development Selection Committee. For the past 9 years he has also served as Executive Director of the Stand Up for Kids Tucson Chapter, an all-volunteer organization working with homeless teens and street kids.
2013 campaign goals by Buehler-Garcia on why he is running again:
I have a great passion for our community and it breaks my heart that it has been allowed to drift so far from its true potential.
Things have not improved; Tucson was ranked the 6th poorest large metro area in 2011 and the City of Tucson’s most recent stress index states that 29.7% of children in the City live in poverty. More than half of our residential streets are in failing or poor condition. The same study shows that Ward III is ranked highest in the incidence of burglary & domestic violence (My own property has had 6 attempted burglaries and one successful burglary!) The lowest median household income in Tucson is in Ward III.
We have a top research university, a major defense installation & manufacturer, wonderful weather and are located 50 miles from one of our nation’s largest trading partners. How is it conceivable that we are not leading the state in economic recovery rather than trailing?
I believe that much of the waste in Rio Nuevo resulted from the lack of professional knowledge and political courage. Budgeting priorities are misplaced.
City Council Wards 3, 5, and 6 are up for re-election this year, and all three Democratic Councilmembers are speaking at Democrats of Greater Tucson (click here for earlier post). No Republican opponents have filed any statements of organization as yet against Councilmembers Fimbres (Ward 5) or Councilmember Kozachik (Ward 6).