If you’re a current subscriber, log in below. If you would like to subscribe, please click the subscribe tab above.
Username and Password Help
Officeholders vie for new terms; Cotulla ISD hopes for $65M bond
Voters in Frio and La Salle counties have begun casting ballots this week for their choices of city councilors and school board trustees in the lead-up to election day Saturday, May 7.
Early voting began Monday, April 25, and continues through Tuesday, May 3. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on election day.
The local government and school elections feature a number of incumbents at Pearsall, Dilley and Cotulla, and in some races there are no challengers to the officeholders. Voters will also state whether they favor or oppose a school district bond issue.
At Pearsall City Hall, incumbent Councilors James Leal and Sonia Hernandez face no challengers in the May municipal election. Councilors Julian Hernandez in Place 2 and Brenda Trevino in Place 4 are ineligible to seek re-election, as they have reached their term limits set by the city charter.
Ramiro Trevino and Brian Blackburn are candidates for election in Place 2; Rachel Garza and Aurora Garza are candidates in Place 4.
Two seats on the Pearsall ISD Board of Trustees are on the ballot this year. In Place 5, incumbent Trustee Tomas “Tommy” Navarro faces challenger Jorge Cabasos; in Place 6, incumbent Trustee Eric G. Fletcher is being challenged in his bid for re-election by candidates Eulogio “Logie” Rodriguez and Matthew Aguilar.
Pearsall voters can cast ballots early at the Frio County Conference Room, 410 S. Pecan Street, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. through May 3. Extended hours are offered Saturday, April 30, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Although the polls are centralized for early voting, the election clerk is encouraging voters to know their precinct and voter box number.
Three council seats are on the ballot in the Dilley municipal election this year. In Place 3, incumbent Councilor Alicia Machado is being challenged by Joanne Rodriguez; in Place 4, candidates Alexandria Inocencio and Mary Ann Obregon are making bids for the seat currently held by Councilor Everardo “Bebe” Castillo, who leaves office this year; and in Place 5, incumbent Councilor Joe Garcia is being challenged by Rudy Alvarez.
Early voting is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. through May 3 at Dilley City Hall; polls are open at the same site from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on election day.
Dilley ISD is scheduled to host its election for school board trustees in November.
A council election for the city of Cotulla has been canceled this year, as there are no challengers to those filing for seats at the table. One councilor, Reynaldo Garcia, will be replaced, having not filed for re-election, and his seat will be taken by Estanislado “Tanis” Lopez. Mayor Javier Garcia and Councilor Eloy Zertuche are being returned to office unopposed.
At Cotulla ISD, voters will choose trustees and decide whether to allow the district to go out for $65 million in bonds that will be used for a variety of construction projects and purchases. Among the plans for the district are an entirely new high school to be built on the present campus, additions to the school bus fleet, and upgrades to existing buildings.
The school board election includes two races, with Rosario “Ros” Morales and Crystal V. Sanchez vying to take Place 6, where Trustee Raquel Yanez has chosen not to seek another term; and incumbent Place 7 Trustee Jamie L. Whitwell being challenged in her re-election bid by write-in candidate Alfredo Zamora Jr.
Proposition A on the Cotulla ISD election ballot asks voters to check whether they are in favor of or against “The issuance of an amount not to exceed $65,000,000 [in] school building bonds for the construction, renovation, acquisition and equipment of school buildings in the district, the purchase of the necessary sites for school buildings, and the purchase of new buses and other new vehicles to be used for student transportation, and the levying and imposition of taxes sufficient to pay the principal of and interest on the bonds.”
The proposition on the ballot also includes the statement “This is a property tax increase.”
Cotulla ISD has replaced its elementary and middle schools in the past decade, having built the Frank Newman school on property adjacent to two of its campuses; expanded and redeveloped its Encinal Elementary School; and having opened its new $25 million Ramirez/Burks Elementary School on recently acquired property west of downtown in December 2021. The current high school was built in the late 1970s and now ranks as the oldest and most outdated of the district’s instructional facilities.
If voters agree to allow the bond issue, Cotulla ISD expects to demolish its 43-year-old high school in stages while new facilities are built in its place. Classrooms available to the district during the construction process include those at the former Newman Middle School and Ramirez/Burks Elementary, as they have remained serviceable since being vacated.
While not all of the bond funds will be used for a total campus replacement, preliminary plans for the high school project include all new classrooms, administration offices and library, auditorium, band hall and gymnasium, and buildings for arts, agriculture, and trades shops as well as renovation of the CISD tennis courts.
Early voting in the CISD election takes place at the district administration building through May 3. The same facility serves as the polling station for all precincts from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on election day.