Rowlett Texas – Kudos and Criticisms

Rowlett Texas – Kudos and Criticisms

First and foremost, I want to share some GREAT NEWS with my readers.

Congratulations are in order for Doug Phillips and Chris Kilgore regarding their wins in the race for Rowlett City Council. 

Yesterday was election day for Rowlett and I think you all know of the troubles we had with our former Mayor, his denigration of the Council, City Manager and City Secretary and how Friday night he once again reared his delusional head in an attempt to bring further discord and disruption to our GREAT City, Former Mayor John Harper vs The World — Part XII.

John Harper, the former Hizzoner, now known locally as ‘Hizzoner the Piss-ant’, has failed in his efforts once again.

Chris Kilgore, running for Council Member Place 5, was re-elected to the Council with 63.24% of the vote. In the race for Council Member Place 1 Doug Phillips was re-elected with 59.94% of votes cast.

City Council Place 3 has shaped up to be a runoff between my friend, neighbor and all around good guy, Ron Miller, and current Council member Patrick Jackson. Miller was able to garner 38.35% of all votes cast. Jackson received 34.84% of the votes in a race that was split 3 ways by the entry of Carl Pankratz, an Attorney at Republic Title.

Pankratz had a dismal 3rd place finish (26.80%) in a race that only pays WIN. Place and show don’t count.

Some of you may remember this story, The Demise of the Rowlett TEA Party, it was posted last Friday, May 6th. In it, the Rowlett TEA Party actually called for Rowlett citizens to NOT vote in the race for City Council, Place 3. Somehow, in their skewed mind, a 3 way race, in which they, The TEA Party, didn’t get their questions answered in a manner that they believed to be satisfactory, was beneath their endorsement or vote.

More importantly, the Place 3 race was the target of a SLAM against the City of Rowlett itself when the TEA Party, by their recommendation to citizens to sit out that particular race, sought to disrupt the electoral process, an effort that was brought to light recently when a TEA Party official wanted to launch a campaign where TEA Party members filed for Council positions, many TEA Party members filing for Council positions, with no intention of actually running, done only in an attempt to ‘muddy the waters’ and bring about as much local disruption as possible.

All things considered, it’s possible the recent issues Rowlett had with our deposed Mayor may have been a factor. It’s possible that the TEA Party, in their attempt to get citizens to not vote in Place 3, may have had other, more damaging consequences. I sadly have to say this, Rowlett Texas just had the most disheartening voter turn-out in modern election history.

We have somewhere in the neighborhood of 33K +/- registered voters in Rowlett. We had a grand total of 1,091 voters that actually got out and participated in this election by casting votes.

That is an utterly embarrassing voter response. One of our Council members has often said, “We get the government we deserve.”

How true! What does it say for the community when only 3 or 4 per cent of ALL registered voters show up at the polls? What does that say about the lack of care, or, maybe, the level of apathy that some citizens are feeling?

One of our former Council members (Cindy Rushing) and I had the opportunity to engage in several conversations yesterday. I came away with a lot of knowledge from those words we exchanged, the most important being what Cindy said regarding LOCAL elections and how they impact the lives of people even more, and more directly, that do national or state elections.

Pretty sad huh?

We now have a Special Election coming up for Council Place 4, an election to replace Todd Gottel after he had to resign to run for Mayor, and the Mayoral election itself that we have to get done. I don’t know just HOW those races are going to shape up and we won’t know until close of business on Monday, May 16th when filing closes.

I say this, Support Todd Gottel for Rowlett Mayor. Rowlett is set to become a destination, Todd Gottel is the leader that can take us there.

Once those places are settled, we can close a disgraceful chapter in Rowlett politics and get on with the business of making Rowlett into the even GREATER city we all know it can be.

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7 Responses to Rowlett Texas – Kudos and Criticisms

  1. Robert says:

    Good deal Fred, you guys have worked hard to support your guys/gals. Activism and involvement is NOT just for the progressives. Pretty sad about the turnout though. I bet if you asked every registered resident of Rowlett, all 33k of them, you’d get 50 to 70% of them that voted for American Idol or Dancing with the Stars… The REALLY sad part is, your city is going to mirror the nation I fear.

  2. GM Roper says:

    Good post Fred, sadly, our own city and school districts in McAllen only had a slightly better than a 9% turnout despite two hotly contested spots, one each on the Utilities and School boards. When I went to vote, there were about 40 folk encouraging others to vote for various candidates outside of the “wire” but only 5 people voting and the signature lines were pathetic in terms of numbers.

    9 out of 100 eligible voters… Pathetic. We cannot keep a Republic with apathy like this.

  3. “All politics is local.”

    Where have I heard that before. . . ?


  4. mrchuck says:

    I want to CONGRATULATE “TEXAS FRED” for putting The City of Rowlett, TX. on the map!!

    He has worked day and night to help this small city, over- shadowed by the humongous giant named Dallas,TX.,, become a city in it’s own right.

    Once the new City Administration is seated, and things settle down, I would ask that the new city council “recognize” Fred, by “proclamation”, as a citizen of outstanding leadership and values, for his endeavor to make the City of Rowlett, TX a place to live and visit, and raise a family.

    I feel an enormous strength in making this statement.

    I will personally visit a City Council meeting, if need be, and stand before their podium, and make this recommendation in person, at my expense, if it is necessary.

    Charles Meredith — Gun Barrel City, TX.

  5. TexasFred says:

    Mr. Chuck — That is high praise indeed and greatly appreciated too, and I thank you sincerely!

    Truth be known, I am not doing this for personal recognition or gain, I am doing it because I want to see Rowlett be ALL it can be, and I believe we are well on the way to that happening…

    I have had people ask me why I don’t run for Council, and I have considered it, but elected office is NOT in my future I am afraid…the reason being, this blog, my less than polite views, my too honest opinions and the far less than politically correct statements I have made in the past that are now a part of the public domain and would serve to make me unelectable in too many areas…

    But again, thank you Sir, for those kind words and your loyalty to me as a reader and an *on-line* friend!

  6. TexasFred says:

    OK, it appears that Todd Gottel is unopposed and will be the next Mayor of Rowlett…

    Patrick Jackson IS going to retain his seat in Place 3, Ron Miller withdrew from the Place 3 race and will run in Place 4 against *Brownie* Sherrill and Duane Fecher, both relatively unknown…

    Carl Pankratz did not file for the Special Election in Place 4…

  7. Ron Miller says:

    I feel some explanation is in order. I have taken some modest flak for withdrawing from Place 3. To some it appears as cowardice. Those who know me know otherwise. I have been called a lot of things, but coward has never been one of them. However, I do pick which fights to fight in. It comes with maturity.

    The word “underwriter” means a couple of things. Most people think in terms of the insurance business when the word “underwriter” is used. Underwriting is a word that is also used in the construction and land development finance business. In the development finance business, the word underwriter is interchangeable with the words “loan officer.” Essentially, underwriting means “risk calculation.” That’s what I did for 25 years of the 40+ years I was in the real estate appraisal, construction, and construction lending business. That’s what all loan officers or loan underwriters do. They calculate risk when making recommendations to loan committee to fund a loan. It’s a learned skill.

    I won’t bore you with all the analytical details, but this morning I withdrew from the Place 3 “runoff.” I essentially gave Patrick Jackson Place 3. I then filed for Todd Gottel’s old Place 4 post. Todd vacated this seat when he announced his run for mayor.

    Altho I was leading in Place 3, it was only by 38 votes out of 1082 votes cast. The third place finisher had 290 of those votes (26.8%) and no one had much of a clue how these votes would “split out” in a “runoff” election. Essentially, my “runoff” race could go either way. Since I was going to be in a runoff race anyway, I opted to drop down to Place 4 and possibly take on the third place challenger who only had 26% of the vote. I knew a couple of others were entering the race, but they had never run before and had no experience on city committees or boards. Essentially, they have no constituency, or not much. The third place challenger was a good challenger. He knew how to campaign. I knew he was the one I had to face and win. I felt I had very good support, and a good constituency but I wanted to further dilute the risk.

    As it turned out, the third place challenger did not file. I will be facing two relative unknowns with no city experience that I know of, and with a very respectable amount of firepower. From an loan underwriter’s point of view, this is a more acceptable risk.

    We pick which fights we want to fight in. It is not my desire to necessarily beat anyone. It is my desire to get on City Council.

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