Denton City Council Place 5 at-large candidates Rick Baria and Deb Armintor shared their ideas for a better city during an online forum Wednesday.
“I think we are strongest in our people,” Armintor said. “We’ve got so much creativity here. We have wonderful synthesis in arts and businesses in this town.”
A professor at the University of North Texas, Armintor is the Place 5 incumbent. Elected in 2018, she’s in her first term.
“There’s a misconception about me that I am anti-business and that I have my own agenda,” she said. “I wait for agendas to come to me. When I am pushing something forward, it is because it has come to me from the people. I will fight for you. I believe in fairness and equity for individuals, families and small businesses.”
Baria questioned some of Armintor’s votes as a council member.
“I’m a pretty practical man,” he said. “Most people who know me think I’m a reasonable individual. I don’t think the idea of all or nothing works too well in politics. Denton has a bright future, but we need to get along. I think of Denton as a nice community where I’d … like to have a peaceful life.”
Baria said he works in site design.
“I’m the first stage of development. My work is site design. I’m not a developer. I help people get started,” he said. “Most of the work I have done is to take properties that have been controversial … to come up with a compromise.”
He also said he’s been asked by “some folks” why he’s running.
“I’m concerned about some votes my opponent has made,” Baria said. “Denton is strong. Where are we weak? We are weak in that we don’t have a constant stream of income for our funds and we’ve been a little hesitant to really compete. And this is a competitive world.”
Armintor seemed to take Baria to task about her voting record.
“Rick, I’ve seen your website,” she said. “It shows my voting record. It’s interesting to see how my votes are characterized. When I saw that, I was kind of disappointed. But I never try to portray [my opponents] for someone they’re not.”
The election is set for Nov. 3. On Wednesday, the Denton Chamber of Commerce will host an online forum for Place 6 at-large candidates Jim Mann, incumbent Paul Meltzer and Liam York, at 4 p.m. on Facebook.