Two Plano City Council candidates endorsed by Gov. Greg Abbott defeated Plano Mayor Harry LaRosiliere’s preferred choices Saturday in the city's runoff elections.
Challenger Shelby Williams ousted incumbent Council Member Ron Kelley while Lily Bao beat her opponent Ann Bacchus by a wide margin, with all vote centers reporting in Collin and Denton counties.
Kelley thanked his supporters and congratulated Williams late Saturday in a Facebook post.
"Now let’s move forward together and continue to make Plano the City of Excellence it is,” Kelley's statement read. In an email, he declined to comment further.
Williams and Bao did not immediately respond late Saturday to requests for comment.
"A big thank you to everyone who volunteered and helped with the campaign," Bao wrote in a Facebook post after the returns came in. "I very much look forward to serving all Plano residents.”
Williams and Bao both touted the governor’s endorsements on the campaign trail, running as fiscal conservatives who would curb municipal property tax growth and rein in high-density apartment development.
Kelley and Bacchus were backed by the mayor and local police and fire groups.
Although Bacchus said she was disappointed in the outcome, she said the citizens spoke. Bacchus added that she hopes Bao will "govern based on what the citizens need," not ideology.
"The campaigning is over, and I hope that we can put whatever differences we have [behind us] and [that] she’ll be an excellent councilwoman and do great things for Plano," Bacchus said.
The results coincided with a large spike in voter turnout among Plano voters in Collin County.
Plano voters in Collin County cast 21,260 ballots—up from 17,973 in the city’s last runoff election in 2017. The 18% increase in cast by Plano residents in Collin County outpaced the 3% rise in the number of registered voters during that same time frame.
In all, 13% of the Plano residents registered to vote in Collin County cast ballots in early voting alone. That’s up from 11% in the 2017 council runoffs.
Here were the final unofficial totals with all vote centers reporting:
Shelby Williams—11,071 votes counted, 53%
Ron Kelley, incumbent—9,712 votes counted, 47%
Lily Bao—12,251 votes counted, 57%
Ann Bacchus—9,319 votes counted, 43%