Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Upcoming Local Elections

The federal and state elections are history and the governments in Washington and Austin are beginning to take shape. That means it must be time to turn our attention to local elections, scheduled to take place May 6, 2017. The deadline to file to run is over a month away, February 17, 2017 at 5:00 p.m., so it's still way early, but here is a look at the early field.

City of Richardson

All seven city council seats in the City of Richardson are up for election every two years. Based on reports of candidate packets being picked up, and word of mouth and social media, it's expected that six of the seven incumbents will run for re-election. Place 1 is expected to be an open seat. It's expected to draw interest from one candidate with experience in both city and school government. No challengers have gone public with their plans yet.

Matters have been quiet in Richardson politics lately, at least compared to the furor raised by Mayor Maczka's decision in 2015 not to serve a second term for which she had been elected without opposition. Whether that experience or whether new issues become the basis for contested races for city council remain to be determined.

Richardson Independent School District

Two of seven seats on the RISD board of trustees are up for election in 2017. The two incumbents in those seats are expected to run for re-election. No challengers have gone public with their plans yet. In addition, trustee Kris Oliver's seat will be open, as he intends to step down early. No candidates for that seat have gone public with their plans yet either.

RISD politics have been heated lately. Plans for dealing with overcrowding in Lake Highlands High School feeder pattern are up in the air and are expected to be a hot issue. Additionally, the RISD's response to the arbitrary 8.5 percent cap for special education students that the Texas Education Agency placed on districts beginning in 2004 is expected to be an issue in RISD elections in 2017.

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