Early Voting Continues Until This Friday
Primary Election Tuesday, May 29
Published May 21, 2012 @ 3:29 p.m.
With the Primary Election falling on Tuesday, May 29, the day after the Memorial Day holiday, you might want to take advantage of the early voting that continues this week through Friday, May 25. Registered voters - all parties and all precincts - cast votes during the early voting period at the Garza County Courthouse, Monday - Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Total voting during the first week of early voting was 225: 211 Republicans, 14 Democrats.
Voters who attended the recent Candidates’ Forum sponsored by the Post Area Chamber of Commerce had an opportunity to hear from most of the local candidates. Moderator James Eppler from Lubbock’s FOX34 began the portion of the forum relating to local races with the candidates for District Attorney: Brian Kingston, incumbent and Michael Munk.
Kingston began by detailing his experience: prosecutor in Austin, Lubbock and Midland; law instructor for several police organizations; adjunct professor of law at University of Texas and Texas Tech Schools of law;
Vice-chairman of the governor’s council to stop violence against women.
Munk, who currently serves as Garza County Attorney is also a past Assistant District Attorney working with the former DA Ricky Smith. Munk stated that “I do not have platform” but that he would pursue his tradition of being tough on crime. He also explained that he intends to institute some changes in the DA’s office.
“I feel preparation is lacking” [in the District Attorney’s office] and “many cases are lost due to lack of preparation.” Munk also said that he believed the current DA’s office “has some capable attorneys” but he believes problems in that office stem from the management and leadership.
Kingston stated in closing that he is “incredibly passionate about what I do.” Munk reminded the audience to “make an informed decision. Talk to local law enforcement officers and find out their feelings about working with the D.A.’s office.”
Garza County Sheriff
All three candidates for Sheriff participated in the Candidates’ Forum: Cliff Laws, Phil Mathews and Terry Morgan. Speaking to the audience, incumbent Sheriff Cliff Laws, who has 33 years law enforcement
experience including 7 years as sheriff of Garza County, stated that he had been questioned about his health. “Everybody has health problems. Our job is to investigate whether the commissioners, county court or the county judge likes it or not.”
Mathews, who has 28 years’ experience in law enforcement, said that he plans to train personnel to work
faster and smarter and he will have an “open door” policy. “I want Post, Southland and Justiceburg to be
safe places to raise a family.”
Morgan, a resident of Southland has 23 years law enforcement experience. For the past 17 years he has been an investigator for the Lubbock County Criminal District Attorney’s office. Morgan emphasized that the good relationships he has formed throughout the state during his years in law enforcement would serve the county well if he is elected sheriff. He believes that through the sharing of information, tax dollars can be saved.
Morgan also believes that it is very important to promote and project a positive image of the sheriff’s office and its employees. He said he will “lead with sound and moral judgment” which will improve the safety of the residents of Garza County.
County Commissioner Precinct 1
Incumbent Gary McDaniel recapped accomplishments made during his 2 terms as County Commissioner of Precinct 1: asphalt on all streets in Southland; added to the Dalby Unit which brings Garza County 1.3 million dollars a year; built a new jail; completed the elevator project and “we continue to upgrade the courthouse on a pay as you go basis.” McDaniel has also upgraded about 8 miles of road in Precinct 1. “I ask that I may continue this work with you in Garza County.”
Fogerson, who lives in Southland, has been “in the school business” 25 years. “I don’t know a thing about politics. I know I want to represent you to the best of my ability to keep things going. I have lived here 25 years so I have a vested interest.”
County Commissioner Precinct 3
Ted Brannon introduced himself to the audience and explained that he is the only Republican running for County Commissioner Precinct 3. (His opponent, John Valdez, is on the ballot as a Democrat.) Brannon has lived in Post 38 years and stated: “I have been honored to be a County Commisioner. I think the court works well together and we have accomplished a lot. I hope to continue.”
Ronald Gilbert was the only candidate for Constable 2 to participate in the Candidates’ Forum. He explained to the audience that Constable 2 covers Commissioner Precincts 3 and 4. “I have lived in Garza County for 8 years and have been employed by the sheriff’s office since coming to Post. I have 32 years’ experience in law enforcement. I want to be your constable so I can go out and serve you.”