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Powell says he didn't aggressively approach Garcia at MDD meeting
by Coy Slavik, Advance-Guard Editor
Apr 17, 2013 | 818 views | 0 0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print
GOLIAD – City council candidate Roney Powell said Wednesday that he did not aggressively challenge city councilman Lionel Garcia during Monday night's Goliad Municipal Development District meeting.

According to MDD Chairman Hernan Jasso, Powell, who is running for one of three available spots on city council, tried to aggressively reach and make contact with incumbent Garcia while Garcia was speaking during public comment.

"I said, 'Lionel, let's go outside and talk about this,' because Mr. Jasso wouldn't allow me to speak. He just shut me down," Powell said.

Jasso said Garcia was defending himself against allegations made by Powell's wife, Linda, during the meeting.

In public comment, Linda Powell protested outstanding loans granted by the MDD to Garcia and another sitting city council member, Vicki Rubio. On the agenda for the meeting was discussion of Garcia's and Rubio's loans.

While the MDD board was waiting for member Luis Rodriguez to arrive to provide a quorum, Garcia was allowed by Jasso to answer Linda Powell's comments.

The Advance-Guard acquired the audio recording of the meeting.

"I just have something that I want to say," Garcia said. "I'm fed up with all this talk they've been doing."

Garcia, who runs a local laundromat, then spoke about his outstanding loan.

"I did not predict that this was going to happen," Garcia said. "My first loan, I did pay it all off. ... The second loan, they gave it to me because I paid the loan. They took my word. ... They know us here in Goliad. They know what we have done in Goliad."

Garcia said family health issues have prevented him from making regular payments on his second loan.

"I did not predict that my dad was going to have cancer," Garcia said. "I did not predict that I would have to pay all his bills. That's why I have been struggling to pay the building."

Garcia then spoke directly to the Powells.

"I'm not going to run. I'm going to pay these bills," Garcia said. "So Roney and y'all don't worry about it. I will pay for it. People here in Goliad are upset that y'all are trashing me out. If you want the laundromat, take it."

Linda Powell tried to interject a comment.

"No. Y'all have talked too much already," Garcia told Linda Powell. "I have not approached y'all and I'm not talking behind your backs or anywhere. That's why I came here today to tell y'all in y'all's face, because I don't talk about nobody behind their back."

Jasso then called a point of order.

Roney Powell requested time to respond to Garcia's comments, but was not allowed to do by Jasso.

"I'm not going to allow that," Jasso said.

"He just attacked me personally," Roney Powell replied.

"I'm not going to allow that," Jasso repeated. "That's all there is."

"Can we ask the board if they would like to hear my response?" Roney Powell asked Jasso.

"No sir," Jasso said. "You're asking me as chairman and I'm not allowing it."

Roney Powell is heard on the audio telling Garcia, "Lionel, I have supported you in the past."

"Let's go outside and talk," Roney Powell is heard saying to Garcia.

"No," Garcia replied. "I'm tired of it."

Jasso said Powell reached for Garcia, but brushed the knee of incumbent city council member Vicki Rubio, who was seated between Garcia and Powell.

City administrator Larry Zermeno said Powell's actions appeared aggressive.

The Advance-Guard was not successful in its efforts Tuesday to contact Garcia.

More on this story coming to mySouTex.com.
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