Councilman Shaw Says He's Running in 2019 – But Probably Not Without a Fight

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District 2 Councilman William Cruz Shaw - CITY OF SAN ANTONIO
  • City of San Antonio
  • District 2 Councilman William Cruz Shaw
Councilman William Cruz Shaw said he'll seek re-election in 2019, despite the rumors crisscrossing Council District 2 that he's frustrated with City Hall and looking to bow out.

Shaw kept it short: "I'm running."

Representing the East Side, the first-term councilman scored in the fall when city council approved a master development agreement for the $62-million redevelopment of city-owned Redberry Mansion. But he's also taken heat for not backing opponents of developer Mitch Meyer's proposed apartment next to the Hays Street Bridge.

When City Manager Sheryl Sculley approved the controversial project in March, albeit with several conditions, she overruled the Historic and Design Review Commission and inflamed community activists fighting the project. Shaw has largely kept quiet about the move.



In the meantime, a potential rival has surfaced. Salena Santibáñez, who owns a construction consulting firm and lives on East Houston Street near the AT&T Center, said she's deciding whether to run next year for the District 2 seat.

"In my neighborhood" – Harvard Place/Eastlawn, down the road from rapidly gentrifying Dignowity Hill – "we're actually seeing a decline in property values," said Santibáñez, a native San Antonian who bought her Houston Street home several years ago. "People were so eager for development on the East Side that it was done selfishly and without the community."

She added: "I've fought to get a sidewalk. I've fought to get a [rundown and crime-ridden] apartment building torn down. I've been in it. I've been fighting for this community."

She's also the founder of the Boardroom Project, a program that prepares women for executive roles in corporations and nonprofits.

[Full disclosure: I worked for Shaw's council campaign as a paid consultant for two and a half months during the 2017 city elections.]

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