Hear From Nick on the Issues
Nick Hellyar understands that Houstonians need a champion on City Council. His experience working at City Hall gave him the passion needed to fight for you and your neighborhoods. He understands that being on Council is about fighting for your needs, period.
As an At-Large Council Member, I will take the lead in ensuring the proper planning, funding, and improvement of our city’s infrastructure. Houston’s roads are in disrepair, our homes are flooding each time it rains, and improvement projects are stalled or delayed due to insufficient funding and an inefficient permitting process.
I will work with the business community, builders, contractors, developers, and other stakeholders to streamline the permitting process. This has been a problem in our City for years, impeding economic development and improvements to infrastructure. Slow response, and a lack of consistency and predictability continue to plague the process, which delays construction and business openings, and ultimately the receipt of revenue for the City. This situation is unacceptable and unsustainable.
We must have enough adequate infrastructure to support our economy and quality of life now, and in the years to come. I am a supporter of the ReBuild Houston program, now known as Build Houston Forward, and as an At-Large Council Member, I will push to prioritize and expedite street construction projects around the city, repairing our worst streets first.
I am also a strong supporter of having modern and accessible mass transit infrastructure in Houston that will support our future growth. As an At-Large Council Member, I will work to expand and improve our public transportation infrastructure and our walkability and bikeability-related projects.
After Hurricane Harvey, and continued 500-year floods over the past few months, the need to strengthen drainage and flood control has never been more urgent.
Repairing our streets is integral to improving flood mitigation because our roads are designed to hold water, which prevents floodwater from reaching our homes. I will work to prioritize and expedite projects that do the most good by focusing on the worst areas first.
Improving City Finances
Resolving the City’s financial challenges is at the top of my priority list. Using my experience as a small businessperson, and as a former City Hall staffer, I will work to improve the City’s financial standing.
We must work to be more accountable in order to cover our unfunded liabilities, such as pensions, and I pledge to be a good steward of our tax dollars. The most recent pension deal may have given us more time to find a solution to one of our financial obligations, but it is critical to the lifeblood of our city that funds are allocated properly across the board in a forward-thinking manner.
As a Council Member, I will always vote to protect our city’s financial security. I am a strong advocate for zero-based budgeting. Passing budgets from year to year that change nothing but add spending is not the way to responsibly manage our City’s finances. Each department should start from zero and building from there.
Traffic & Mobility
I support any program that increases walkability and bikeability, as well as access to buses and light rail. I also strongly support the Houston METRONext bond that will be on the ballot in November. As the next At-Large 4 Council Member, I will not only pursue ways to improve mass transit, but I will also aim to educate my neighbors on the importance of public transportation in an increasingly dense city.
Additionally, with safer bikeways and a more robust network of cycling routes, Houston will see more citizens choosing to ride their bikes around the city. As an At-Large Council Member, I will be an ardent supporter of improving cyclist safety.
As an avid cyclist, I understand how dangerous it can be to navigate our city without the basic safety measures and infrastructure we need to protect residents. One of the easiest things the City can do to lower cyclist-automobile accidents is improve the tenmost dangerous intersections for cyclists in Houston. The City has already identified these problem areas and leaders should take action immediately.
The Houston Police Department is severely understaffed – the city is currently at a 1200-officer deficit. Compared to other major cities, we simply do not have enough police officers to adequately protect residents. Funding public safety should always be a top priority. As an At-Large Council Member, I will work to increase the number of police officers patrolling our streets to keep us safe, and I will fight to ensure that our first responders receive the pay they deserve.
In addition, by reducing arrests for minor, nonviolent offenses, the City of Houston and the Houston Police Department would be able to divert more resources toward preventing and solving more serious crimes, which would have a positive impact on public safety.