On a night when the nation watched a historic presidential election, Erath County voters participated in their own local historic voting event.
Erath County has 20,175 registered voters. Records show 14,260 voters cast a ballot during this election cycle; that’s more than 70-percent of all registered voters in the county.
The numbers also indicate that Erath is still predominantly “red” with 4,592 voters choosing to cast a straight Republican Party ballot. Some 1,379 voters cast straight Democratic Party ballots and 52 cast straight Libertarian Party ballots.
While the nation watched as Barack Obama was chosen to serve as the next president, 10,757 Erath voters supported Senator John McCain and Vice Presidential running mate Governor Sarah Palin, amounting to 76.80-percent of the total county vote.
Senator Barack Obama and his vice presidential choice Senator Joe Biden won 3,126 Erath County votes, or 22.32-percent.
Texas Secretary of State Hope Andrade reported 13.5 million people were registered to vote in the state. More than 59-percent of the state’s voters turned out, with 54-percent of those voters supporting the Republican presidential ticket.
Several local school districts also held important elections Tuesday night.
Huckabay ISD held a tax rate election (TRE), hoping to generate more funds for the district. A total of 574 voters participated in the election, deciding against a tax rate increase with nearly 63-percent of the total votes.
Superintendent Cheryl Floyd said the TRE would have helped the school.
“Obviously, we’re disappointed,” Floyd said. “But it was in the hands of the voters. Huckabay will continue to be a high quality school without the TRE.”
Public schools in Texas have only two ways to generate funds, one is through taxes and the other is state funding based on enrollment.
Floyd said enrollment numbers are not increasing and the district has already lost five students this year.
The district did elect three members to the board of trustees Tuesday.
Troy Brown led the pack with 259 or 23-percent of the total votes. Gary Williams was elected with 215, or 19-percent of the votes. Patrick Weiss also made the cut with 192 votes, or 17-percent.
Lingleville ISD also elected members to their board. Four candidates were selected for full term positions and one was elected to fill an unexpired term.
Lonney Click carried nearly 27-percent of the votes, while Larry Griffin and Brent Hallmark nearly tied in number of total votes and both were elected. Robert Kellar took the fourth spot with nearly 18-percent of the final vote.
Richard Boeve was elected to the unexpired term with 224, nearly 76-percent, of the total votes.
Morgan Mill ISD held elections to fill four chairs on the board, but only two of the races were contested.
David Kincannon took place 1 with 277 votes, or 69.77-percent.
Bettye Key took place 4 with a narrow three-vote margin. Key received 196 votes and opponent Buster Frazier received 193.
Bob Newby and Lynn Kinsey were elected to place 2 and place 3 respectively.