The Bell County Commissioners race for Precinct No. 2 will go to a runoff election in May. Republican incumbent Tim Brown took away the highest percentage of the vote, with 44.46 percent. He will face off against Bobby Whitson, who received 33.23 percent, according to unofficial results in Tuesday’s primary election.
Brown has been a county commissioner for six terms. He blamed leadership at the Texas Legislature for a large amount of unfunded mandates. He said in an interview earlier this month that county growth, road maintenance, restricting the size of county government and unfunded mandates from the state are among his top priorities.
Bobby Whitson is the president of the Greater Central Texas Federal Credit Union, and said that his experience as a banker gives him a unique vantage point.
Former Fort Hood garrison sergeant major and Army contractor John Driver was chosen by the Bell County voters as the Democratic nominee for the position of Bell County commissioner for Precinct 4.
Driver received 128 more votes over challenger Louie Minor. He garnered 54 percent of the vote, compared to Minor’s 46 percent, according to unofficial results with all precincts reporting.
Driver mentioned Killeen police Chief Charles “Chuck” Kimble’s three guiding principles (fight crime, operational efficiency and community service) when talking about his goals for the county, and placed a large emphasis on crime, transportation and economic development.
“I know how to work with people to get results,” he said.
The winner faces off against John Fisher, who has been the commissioner of Precinct 4 for the past 16 years. Fisher said in an earlier interview that will be the last time he runs for office, regardless of whether or not he wins the general election in November.
“I just need to get the new county judge in there and up and running, and I’ll turn it over to someone new,” Fisher said, referring to longtime County Judge Jon Burrows, who is not seeking re-election.
Burrows’ likely successor, Republican David Blackburn, is unopposed in the primary and has no Democratic opponent in November.
As for the Precinct 2 Justice of the Peace spot, Cliff Coleman narrowly beat out Richard Sapp by 51.28 to 48.72 percent. Incumbent Ted Duffield took the Justice of the Peace Precinct 1 spot with 68 percent of the vote. His 2.984 votes were good enough to beat Louis Griffin Jr.
Belton lawyer Paul LePak and Temple-based lawyer Jeff Parker will go to a runoff election for the chance to replace Martha Trudo as the 264th District Court judge. LePak took home 42 percent of the vote, while Parker claimed 26 percent. Randy Dale and Steve Duskie, also Republicans, each received 14 percent and 18 percent of the vote respectively.
Trudo retired in August, and other judges from the area have been sitting in on the bench for the various court cases since then.
Republican Gaylon Evans beat out Jeannette Compean for the Republican County Treasurer seat. Evans took home 8,141 votes, good for 55 percent.
Nancy Boston won the Republican County Party chair post in a landslide, securing a 5,700 vote lead over Zenia Warren with 88 percent of the vote reporting.
Christine Rosenberg ran unopposed for the Democratic County Chairman seat, taking home 6,259 votes.
Andrew Eller defeated Jordan Overturf for the Precinct 315 chair by total of 305 votes to 202. Claire Apgar defeated Marcos Sosa with 57 percent of the vote for the Precinct 104 Chair.