March primaries to see crowded races in Spring-area elections

At least one elected position in Spring will have a new face after the general election in November, but with numerous contested races set for the March primaries, Spring and Klein could see several new officials elected in 2016.


One of the few uncontested primaries set for March is the Republican nomination for the District 126 state representative. Kevin Roberts, executive director for the Lanier Law Firm, is running unopposed in the Republican primary to replace state Rep. Patricia Harless, R-Spring, who has held the position since 2006.


Harless announced she would not run for re-election in June. Roberts said he announced his campaign shortly afterward based on the support of friends and local leaders.


“I believe our community—which is very unique [as it is] 95 percent unincorporated—need[s] a strong voice and someone who is willing to advocate for our specific issues in Austin,” Roberts said. “We need individuals with successful track records in leadership and experience making difficult decisions, which I’ve gained over 26 years in business and executive management leadership roles.”


Roberts will face one of two candidates in November who filed for the Democratic primary: Cris Hernandez and Joy Dawson-Thomas.


Hernandez ran for the position as a libertarian in 2014. A project coordinator for a telecommunications company, Hernandez said he grew up in District 126 and wants to advocate for residents who lack a forum for their concerns.


“In this particular district, a lot of the folks here who live in the peripherals, they’re not often given a voice,” he said. “There’s no one [who] raises their particular issues up in a public forum. Mostly what’s put in that public forum is going to be what comes out of the Republican primary.”


Dawson-Thomas, an attorney for the Dawson-Thomas Law Group, said she teaches political science at the University of Houston and often tells her students they can bring about change by running for office. Dawson-Thomas hopes to help bring change to the area she grew up along the FM 1960 corridor.


“I’ve lived out here on this
[FM] 1960 stretch all of my life, and it’s just changing,” Dawson-Thomas said. “The area I remember when I was little doesn’t look anything like it does now, and I don’t like the direction that it’s going in. I feel like we’re going down a rabbit hole.”



Other contested races


There are numerous elections in March that will see contested races. In the other Spring-area state representative race in District 150, incumbent state Rep. Debbie Riddle, R-Tomball, will face opponents Theresa Hearn-Haynes, Valoree Swanson and Al Zolli in the Republican primary.


U.S. Rep. Kevin Brady, R-The Woodlands, is also facing a crowded Republican primary for District 8. His opponents are Andrea Dean, Steve Toth and Craig McMichael.


Law enforcement positions in Spring will also see contested races in March. Precinct 4 Constable Mark Herman is running against Rolf Nelson while Harris County Sheriff Ron Hickman will face opponents Paul Day and Carl Pittman for the Republican nomination.


The Democratic nomination for sheriff is the most contested Democratic primary race with four candidates on file: Ed Gonzalez, Jerome Moore, Theodore Perez and Jeff Stauber.








Important election dates


Feb. 1: last day to register to vote for primary elections
Feb. 16-26: early voting for primaries
March 1: primary elections
April 25: last day to register to vote for runoff elections*
May 16-20: early voting for runoff elections*
May 24: primary runoff election*
Oct. 11: last day to register to vote for general election
Oct. 24-Nov. 4: early voting for general election
Nov. 8: Election Day   


*If necessary


For more information on Harris County elections, visit www.harrisvotes.com.

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