LAMPASAS — Four days into the early voting session for the May general election, Lampasas election officials said votes are trickling in. As of Thursday, just 71 votes had been placed out of 3,700 eligible voters.
With four seats on the ballot for Lampasas City Council, just two races are contested — that of mayor and Place 1. Place 6 Councilman Chris Harrison is running unopposed. Place 2 incumbent Brad Neely chose not to run for reelection, leaving contender Christian Toups to run unopposed.
Mayoral candidate James Finley threw his name in the hat in hopes of creating more jobs and increasing the number of businesses in the area. A 20-year Lampasas resident, he operates an equipment rental and hardware store.
“I’ve been in business in Lampasas for 18 years, and I feel that growth is stagnant,” Finley said. “We need more manufacturing businesses and better paying jobs. We’ve lost one-half dozen businesses in the last 60 days.”
Incumbent Mayor Jerry Grayson is no stranger to public service. He has worked on the city’s planning and zoning commission, served two previous terms on the city council and has more than 20 years of service to the city.
“I moved to Lampasas in 1971 after retiring from the Department of Public Safety,” Grayson said. “The reason I’m running is to continue working for the good of Lampasas. This type of work has been very rewarding and I’ve seen lots of good changes in our economic development with major growth in a variety of areas.”
In the Place 1 race, incumbent Wesley Alexander is finishing his first term. As a deputy with the Williamson County Sheriff’s Office, he sees a lot of potential growth and wants to be involved in planning for the city’s future, he said.
“I originally ran as a citizen here and I could tell the city was going through a lot of changes,” Alexander said. “I’m very big on planning, and looking at the city; it didn’t appear there was a lot of planning for water, sewer and infrastructure support for future growth. What I bring to the table is stability. I like thinking things through, looking for alternative plans and helping determine what is the best for the city so we make wise financial decisions.”
Alexander’s opponent, Wanda Bierschwale, is a former councilwoman. She chose to run again because she loves working with people.
“I love to be around people, and I love to try and make a difference,” Bierschwale said. “I want our city to look good and to grow. I’ve lived in Lampasas for 36 years and I’ve seen a lot of changes during the time I’ve served, including a new school, fire station, etc. We’ve accomplished a lot.”