Candidate profile: Mike DeLara

Photo by Dave A. Vance.
Mike Delara

ELLIS COUNTY — Learn more about Mike DeLara in his own words as he runs for Ellis County Constable Precinct 4 in the 2016 Republican primary.

Election day voting will be held on March 1, 2016 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Click here for a list of election day polling locations. Early voting will take place February 16, 2016 through February 26, 2016. Click here for a list of early voting locations and times.

Click here to view and compare all Constable Precinct 4 candidates' answers on one page.

Mike DeLara questionnaire responses

1) What is your age?

49

2) What is your city of residence?

Glenn Heights

3) How many years have you lived in Ellis County?

19+

4) Tell us a little about your family.

Married 25 years with 3 daughters

5) Describe your education.

High School

6) What previous public office experience have you had?

Ellis County Precinct Chairman

7) What is your occupation?

Dallas County Deputy Constable

8) Describe your church and civic involvement.

Grace Church in Ovilla / Ellis County Republican Party Precinct Chairman

9) Please provide a biographical narrative.

I am a life long Texan, born in Dallas and grew up in Hutchins. I attended private Christian School and graduated with honors. I have one sister. I am a Christian and a completely committed Christ follower. This does not make me perfect but I am forgiven. I attended Dallas Baptist University Police Academy. I have almost 2000 police training hours and hold a Master Police License. I am a state certified police instructor and hold numerous certificates in other police
related areas. I was promoted to the rank of Corporal and then promoted to Sergeant. I have served as a Texas Lawman for almost 25 years. Twenty one years as a Deputy Constable.

10) What motivated your interest in running for Ellis County Constable?

I saw a need for a honest, qualified & experienced Constable. An official that would treat the community, elected officials & other law enforcement agencies in a respectful and professional manner. I want to restore the integrity & credability to Office of the Constable Pct. 4.

11) Briefly and succinctly define the job responsibilities of the office you are seeking.

The Constable is responsible for keeping the peace and suppressing crime within the precinct. They are charged with serving and executing all civil, process and warrants issued to them by the Justice of the Peace or any other judge or magistrate. They are to baliff the Justice Court.

12) What qualifications and professional experiences do you possess that are applicable to law enforcement and to the civil law responsibilities the position you are seeking requires? Be specific.

I have served in the office of the constable for almost 22 years in Dallas County. I have worked in all divisions within the department, civil enforcement, warrant division, traffic division, hazardous warrant service team, court services and training division. I was promoted to corporal and then sergeant and served for many years in that position. I was responsible for supervising more than 40 sworn deputies plus 12-14 civilian support staff, I maintained the property & evidence room, controlled inventory of the department equipment and fleet of more than 40 sqaud cars.

13) What qualifications do you possess that will enable you to manage a budget of over $160,000 for the constable’s office you are seeking? Be specific.

Part of my duties as Sergeant was assisting in the budgeting process of the deparments million dollar budget. We were always tasked with finding ways to cutting our operating expenses each year in order to save the taxpayers money.

14) How has your education prepared you for this office?

I attended and graduated from Dallas Baptist Police Academy.

15) Have you declared bankruptcy or have had any liens placed upon you in the past 10 years? If so, please explain.

No

16) What distinguishes you from your opponent(s)?

Due to my many years of service, I have more law enforcement training and experience than my opponent. My years of service within a large Constable's office has more than made me qualified and prepared to fulfil the duties and responsibilities of the Constable for this office to which I am seeking election. I have been in law enforcement for about 25 years and hold a master peace officer certification as well as multiple training certificates and many hundreds of hours of training. I have experience in supervising over 40 sworn deputies and 12 to 14 civilian support staff. These qualifications alone far exceed that of my opponent.

17) Is there any additional training that you plan to seek to assist you in the duties of Constable?

All elected constables are required to attend special training at the Bill Blackwood Institute. As your newly elected constable I will of course be attending this training. I will always maintain my training hours and seek out new training in order to serve at the highest standards that the community deserves and demands of its law enforcement leaders.

18) What is the appropriate budget size for the constable's office and why should the current budget be cut, remain the same or increased?

Each Constable's office is different and thus requires a different budget. Some of the things that may differentiate each Constable's office would be the amount of work received, number of employees, etc. So whether or not the current budget is appropriate for the office will not be known until I take the office as your next constable. But rest assured I will do my best to manage that budget in a conservative and fiscally responsible way. I will never spend taxpayers money in a irresponsible way. Any items I may deem necessary for the department will not be personal items but instead belong to the department in order to better and more effectively serve the needs of the community.

19) What are the three greatest challenges facing Ellis County related to the position you are seeking? If elected, what measures would you propose to resolve them?

Being that this is a small office, the only major challenges I see are one, the number of people moving into the Precinct. This will affect the amount of work being placed upon the office of the constable. If that work load increases there may be a need for additional staff and or equipment to accommodate the needs of the growing Precinct. The second challenge as I see it is to restore the integrity, dignity, and professionalism of the office as it relates to the public, elected officials, and other law enforcement agencies within the surrounding areas. As your constable I will seek out to restore these lost attributes to the office and work closely with other agencies, elected officials and community leaders in order to efficiently serve the needs of the community to which I am elected as your constable.

20) If elected, what are your top three priorities? How will you work with other elected officials and county staff to achieve them? Be specific.

1) Restore the lost trust, credibility, integrity, professionalism and transparency of the office to the community, the Courts, Elected Officials and other Law Enforcement Agencies.

Improve the efficiency of the Office by correctly and more effectively performing the mandated duties of the Constable Office.

To actively seek out wanted criminals, both foreign nationals and domestic.

2) The question of how to work with and accomplish these goals is not a difficult matter. I believe that each and every elected official desires to work together for the good of the people. It simply must begin with respectful communication between elected officials.

21) In your opinion, what are the most important qualities that a Constable needs to have?

Honesty, Integrity, Professionalism, Wisdom, Passion to Serve, Compassion when needed and Common Sense. Just to name a few.

22) Where do you believe a citizen's rights come from?

I believe that a citizens rights ultimately come from our Creator, God the Father.

23) What is your opinion on the right to carry firearms, as defined in the Constitution of the United States of America?

The 2nd Amendment to the Constitution was originally setup so that citizens could legally carry arms to protect themselves in the event of a rogue or dictorial government.

I am for law abiding citizens responsibly and lawfully carrying firearms in a concealed or open manner.

24) What is your opinion on asset forfeiture for individuals who have not been found guilty in a court of law?

If a person is found to be innocent in a court of law, then of course property seized as evidence would be returned.

25) Federal state and local laws sometimes conflict with the original intent of the Constitution of the United States of America. If elected, how do you plan to enforce laws which may conflict with the Constitution?

In this nation, we are a people who live by rule of law. Laws that conflict are sometimes passed. When that occurs, it is up to our courts to rectify these issues. Some laws are black and white, while others may be a shade of gray. This is where wisdom and common sense come into play.

26) How can the office of Constable best serve the citizens of the county?

The Office of the Constable serves it's county by operating in a professional manner while it performs the duties mandated and described by law.

27) What is your opinion on local law enforcement agencies employing military style training, equipment and tactics?

As the criminal element becomes more heavily armed and is more willing to engage law enforcement, it unfortunately becomes necessary for law enforcement to change in order to overcome this increasingly new hostile type of criminal. The deployment of such tactics and equipment should only be deployed in the face of these situations and not in day to day policing.

28) If elected, how would you reach out and form relationships with residents of Ellis County and how would you reach out to those residents in the outlying areas of the county?

I enjoy meeting people and serving to the best of my ability. I would encourage citizens to come by and visit with me at the office. And I am never opposed to sitting down over a cup of coffee and listening to their concerns.

29) If elected, what are the factors on which you will base your decisions as Constable?

As I previously touched on, a lawman must have God given wisdom and common sense when it comes to equally and fairly applying the law. Each and every situation is unique and different, thus requiring a different action. There is no blanket solution to each and every problem that arises.

30) Why should voters choose you?

I am Mike DeLara and I am the most qualified candidate. Why, because I have almost 25 years as a Texas Lawman, 21 years of that has been in a large Constables Office serving a population of well over 400,000. I have served in every division of the office and was promoted twice to supervisor, having the responsibility of overseeing the day to day operations of 46 sworn deputies and 12 to 14 non-sworn civilian employees. The citizens of Ellis County, Precinct 4, deserve a leader with a heart to serve the community. A leader that understands that the office belongs to the people and that he has been intrusted with the responsibility to operate that office honorably and professionally. They deserve a lawman that will enforce the law fairly and equally no matter the race, religion, color or nationality. If you want a proven leader, I am he, Mike DeLara. So remember, on March 1st, vote Mike DeLara for Your Constable.