In need of a new mayor: Council member Fletcher files for Buda mayor

by VERONICA GORDON

City Council Member Ron Fletcher is running for mayor of Buda in the Dec. 8 special election, bringing the number of candidates vying for the spot to two.

The election comes after Mayor Sarah Mangham’s announcement last month that she was resigning from office for health reasons. Fletcher will face fellow council member Todd Ruge in the election.

Prior to his election to the council in 2008, Fletcher served on Buda’s Home Rule Charter Commission and was chair of Buda’s first Planning & Zoning Commission.

The two-term council member is a retired Air Force fighter pilot who has taught Texas local and state government at Austin Community College for more than 20 years.

“When I was first elected, Buda was perilously dependent on unreliable sales taxes,” Fletcher said in a statement. “I have been the driving force behind Buda’s annexation policy, which has resulted in a 50 percent increase in the territory within the city limits since 2008.  As a result, property tax revenue has almost doubled in spite of relatively modest increases in Buda’s tax rate, which is still about half that of most surrounding cities.”

Fletcher said that as mayor, he will continue expanding the city’s tax base such as the recent annexation of Texas Lehigh.

“I have a large network of local and regional elected officials and key staff developed during my decade of service to the citizens of Buda, and as mayor I plan to call upon them to help finance the many capital improvements needed to keep up with the needs of our fast-growing community,” Fletcher said.  “Contacts like these have already brought in about $25 million of federal, state and county funds for improvements to roads and bridges in Buda since 2008.”

Fletcher, who ran in 2008 using the campaign slogan, “Realize the Vision,” promised then to finish implementing the 2002-2012 Comprehensive Plan.

“I represented the city council on the advisory committee for our new Buda 2030 Comprehensive Plan, which recently won both regional and state-wide awards,” he said. “My campaign slogan remains the same, but it is now a promise to competently and courageously lead Buda into the future as it becomes the city that our citizens want it to be in 2030.”

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