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What's impacting Denton County this November? Local races, propositions to consider

Denton County Voting.JPG
Denton Record-Chronicle
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Denton County Elections Administrations Building

City of Denton

For Denton residents, two special elections are on the ballot. The first is a proposition to recall District 4 City Council member Alison Maguire, which is exclusive to the voters of that district. If District 4 voters approve the proposition, Maguire would lose her place on council, and the Denton City Council would be temporarily down to six members. The reasons for the attempted recall won’t show up on the ballot, but the Denton Record-Chronicle has covered the issue extensively.

The second proposition — a city marijuana ordinance — will be decided by all Denton voters. The ordinance is aimed at decriminalizing misdemeanor possession of marijuana. It will appear on the ballot as: “Shall an initiative ordinance be approved to eliminate low-level marijuana enforcement?”

Denton County

Denton County has a countywide proposition of its own: a $650 million road bond election aimed at funding more than 100 road projects across the county, largely through partnerships with cities and the state. Officials maintain that because the county has an “AAA” bond rating, they won’t need to raise taxes to pay for the program.

On the political front, two races join the road bond in being accessible to every county voter. The first is the county judge election, in which incumbent Republican Andy Eads seeks a second term against Democrat Fabian Thomas. Thomas last ran in 2018, in the Republican primary for Denton County justice of the peace Precinct 2, and was unsuccessful.

The race for Denton County clerk, also open to all voters in the county, comes down to Republican incumbent Juli Luke and Democrat Angela Brewer.

The county’s other races are region specific. The Precinct 2 commissioner’s seat will have a guaranteed shakeup, as longtime Commissioner Ron Marchant is stepping down, leaving the race for the county’s southeastern region to Republican Kevin Falconer and Democrat Diana Weitzel.

There are justice of the peace races in Precinct 1, Precinct 2 and Precinct 6. Joe Holland isn’t running for reelection in Precinct 1, leaving that race to Republican Alan Wheeler and Democrat Olivia Jeffers. In Precinct 2, Republican incumbent James DePiazza is opposing Democrat Stephanie Gardella, and in Precinct 6, Democratic incumbent Chris Lopez is running against Republican Blanca Oliver.

Multiple school districts in the county have propositions on the ballot, including Little Elm ISD, with a $290 million bond package, and Ponder ISD, which proposes a tax rate increase with an impact of about $2.6 million.

U.S. and Texas representatives

Several spots for Denton County’s governmental representation are up for grabs. U.S. House Districts 13 and 26 will see Republican incumbents Ronny Jackson and Michael Burgess defending their posts. Libertarian Mike Kolls is aiming to unseat Burgess, while Democrat Kathleen Brown is challenging Jackson, whose newly redrawn District 13 will include Krum and northern and southeastern Denton.

For state Senate District 12, longtime incumbent Tan Parker will be up against Democratic challenger Francine Ly. Newly created Texas House District 57 will come down to Republican Richard Hayes and Libertarian Darren Hamilton.

The Denton Record-Chronicle will be releasing previews of the races and propositions over the next few weeks, leading up to the start of early voting and Election Day. Those will include candidate interviews and more information about what’s on the ballot.

Tuesday, Oct. 11, is the last day to register to vote in time for the November election.

To view your sample ballot and see more information on the upcoming election, visit votedenton.gov/upcoming-election-information. As a reminder, Denton County won’t have its new voting center system in place for this election, which means that anyone who waits until Nov. 8 to vote will have to vote at their assigned polling place.