TaNeika Driver-Moultrie, president of the Killeen Branch NAACP, said the organization is “outraged with the recommendation” of a former Killeen area justice of peace who lost the election to fill the vacant spot.
Republican Garland Potvin was selected to fill the vacancy of the Bell County Justice of the Peace, Place 4, which covers the Killeen-Harker Heights area.
Democrat Daryl Peters, who previously held the seat, left office in May citing health reasons. Peters had been selected to fill the term of Claudia Brown, the Democrat who had bested Potvin in the 2016 election for the seat.
“This is a slap in the face to the voters of Bell County. The County Commissioners should be transparent, fair and open throughout this process. To have to read this in the paper was truly upsetting. I have reached out to Judge (David) Blackburn and the commissioners demanding answers. Why couldn’t they have recommended (three) persons from the pool of previous applicants of the vacant seat back in March 2019?,” Driver-Moultrie said in a statement. “Although this decision isn’t final, the idea of moving forward with the recommendation is not showing transparency and fairness to the voters of Bell County.”
The consideration of Potvin came from a Bell County Commissioners Court meeting on Monday afternoon. The commissioners, who are responsible for filling vacancies, are expected to consider Potvin’s appointment next week. If he is appointed, he would serve until Dec. 31.
Peters had lost in the Democratic Party primary election to Democrat Gregory Johnson. Johnson faces Republican Michael Keefe in the November election. The winner will start his four-year term Jan. 1, 2021.
FME News Service reporter Jacob Sanchez contributed to this report.