Arlington, Bellaire, Bellmead, Clear Creek ISD, Dripping Springs ISD, Fort Bend ISD, Friendswood, Georgetown, Grapevine-Colleyville ISD, Jefferson Co. Drainage Dist. No. 7, Lubbock, McKinney, North Lamar ISD and West Lake Hills were among the first local jurisdictions to vote to delay their general and special elections until November.
Last week, Gov. Greg Abbott (R) suspended portions of the Election Code to permit local governments to postpone their general elections to November 3 from May 2 and to require county officials to enter into contracts to administer those elections if requested. He encouraged municipalities and other local governments holding elections on May 2 to postpone them.
The Hidalgo Co. elections administrator said her office will not conduct elections for any local government holding a May 2 election. Travis Co. has said the same.
SD14 special: Travis County Judge Sarah Eckhardt (D) has delayed her resignation to continue leading the county’s efforts to respond to COVID-19. Eckhardt automatically resigned when she announced her candidacy for the special election two weeks ago, but she continues to serve until a successor is sworn into office. Former County Judge Sam Biscoe (D) has been selected to succeed her.
We do not specifically recall an instance where an officeholder whose resignation was automatically triggered walking back the actual resignation – the last day in office – on their own. Officials who must resign to run continue to serve until a successor is elected or, in this case, appointed and takes the oath of office, and that can be awhile. Houston council member Jerry Davis, who faces Rep. Harold Dutton (D-Houston) in the Democratic runoff, resigned to run and should have left office in December. He remains in office because his successor has not been elected yet. A long-delayed runoff for his seat remains tied up in court and now further delayed because of COVID-19 closures.
Clearly, leaving office in the midst of a crisis to seek another office would probably be a liability in that race.
County Runoffs: Frank Baca and our friends over at the Texas Assoc. of Counties said 163 county offices in 99 counties will be on a July 14 runoff ballot. Nearly half of all county office runoffs involve county commissioners (76), followed by constable (35) and sheriff (30). Nearly a fourth of county offices on the runoff ballot run countywide. TAC has compiled primary and general election results for county offices since 2016.
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