By Lizzie Thomas | Staff Writer
In McLennan County, the voter results are in with the Republican Party taking County Judge and Comptroller and the Democratic Party taking County Commissioner.
McLennan County Democrat Patricia “Pat” Chisholm-Miller won the seat of county commissioner, Precinct 2, by 29.85 percent after about 22 years of serving in county commissioner’s office as the administrative assistant, defeating Donis “DL” Wilson.
Of 243,394 McLennan County residents, 139,837 are registered voters and 74,398 voted. In 2014, 44,982 voted of 128,120 registered voters. The voter turnout for 2014 was 35.11 percent and for this year was 54.16 percent.
Chisholm-Miller could not be reached for comment.
According to a debate at the Mayborn Museum on Oct. 11, one of the biggest issues Chisholm-Miller said she wants to tackle is economic development in the low-income areas of East Waco, unlike her opponent, Donis “DL” Wilson, who wanted to focus on the rural areas that he said felt neglected.
“Some of the biggest issues are economic development for rural cities and urban areas,” Chisholm-Miller said. “From the county perspective, we need to look at salaries. We need to not only bring up companies and tourism, but also make it so our own people can enjoy what comes with that.”
According to that debate, Chisholm-Miller said she wants to capitalize on the economic prosperity Waco is experiencing and bring it to East Waco to turn it into long-term success for the area.
Scott Felton, the incumbent Republican county judge, won the election against Democratic opponent, Rick Allen by 28.12 percent.
First appointed to serve the rest of Jim Lewis’s term before being re-elected in 2014, Felton told the Waco Tribune-Herald at that time in 2012 he would finish his term and return to his farm. Now, six years later, Felton shows no signs of wanting to do so.
Allen questioned his character regarding this move and others.
“What does that say about his integrity? As county judge, I’d be able to provide the accountability voters don’t have right now,” Allen said Monday.
Allen listed the lack of county parks and libraries as an issue he wants to fix. He acknowledged that the City of Waco has those public amenities important to civic life, but Allen said he wants to serve the rest.
“We don’t have the roads and bridges we need, our county jail is consistently underperforming,” Allen said.
Felton could not be reached for comment.
Glenn Hegar, the incumbent Republican Texas Comptroller, won the race against Joi Chevalier by 26.98 percent in McLennan County and 7.24 percent statewide.
Hegar could not be reached for comment.
A former state senator, Hegar was elected in 2014. He wants to invest the revenue earned from oil and gas severance taxes, so that it’s not just sitting and not gaining more. As far as tax reform, Hegar wants to put out a report on public education funding in order to get the facts about enrollment.
Hegar said that Texas needs to be careful and intentional with its money at a rally in Tyler on Oct. 23, at an event with Grassroots America-We the People.
Chevalier said some of the changes she would have implemented in her 90-day plan included auditing (getting more hard information to work from), evaluating what taxes have not been looked at recently, finance reform in order to make sure that Texas is using funds wisely.
“We’ve got very real issues that we need to address, and so I’m trying to come up with solutions, and this is putting money to work that we have today,” Hegar said. “It’s your money and my money. It’s the taxpayers’ money. If I have a wiser ability to use that money more prudently to solve our problems so that this generation and future generations won’t have to be solving those problems.”
He implied that the funding system is outdated given that it was set up 30 years ago and no one could have predicted the growth.