WilCo election administrator to take new job in Georgia

The resignation of Williamson County's election administrator will be considered by the election commission May 24.

Rick Barron turned in his official resignation May 15 after six years in the position. His last day on the job is slated to be June 7. On June 19, he will start as director of registration and elections in Fulton County, Ga.

"The opportunity in Atlanta is just one I just can't pass up," Barron said. "It's a step up, career-wise."

Fulton County had a population of 949,599 in 2011, more than twice Williamson County's population the same year.

Barron said he applied for the Fulton County position in December, when things were still "up in the air" about his position in Williamson County following several November election issues, but maintained they were not a major factor in deciding to resign.

The election commission held a meeting in January to consider removing Barron from his position after he removed an election judge from a polling place, an incident in Jarrell in which some voters were given the wrong ballot and alleged poor training of election workers at polls.

Removal of Barron required four votes to carry but failed on a 2-3 vote.

County Judge Dan Gattis, who also serves on the Williamson County Election Commission, said the commission must meet to accept Barron's resignation. At that time, members will also set criteria for accepting applications to fill the spot.

"We're going to look for somebody that's been involved in elections before," Gattis said. "Elections are a very complicated business. They've got to have knowledge of laws and regulations. We're looking for somebody in that profession."

Gattis also said the commission has already received two resumes for the position, but they are "strictly unofficial" until the commission accepts Barron's resignation and decides how to look for and accept applicants.

The process could take several weeks by Gattis' estimate, and he said the commission hopes to get the seat filled as soon as possible.

"We're going to miss Rick," Gattis said. "I wish him well with the new job. Atlanta is another fast-growing area. He's definitely got his work cut out for him."

The election commission will meet in the judge's conference room of the county courthouse, 710 Main St., Georgetown, at 1:30 p.m. on May 24 to consider Barron's resignation and decide the best way to proceed.



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