By Greg Ritchie
GRAPELAND – With three places open on both the Grapeland City Council and Grapeland Independent School (GISD) board of trustees, Grapeland residents had a lot of choices to make with a big impact on the future of the city and the schools.
The election was held Saturday, May 6 with voting in the city races downtown and the school board in the library at the junior high. The Messenger knows of no reported problems or issues with the voting.
As recently reported, The Messenger, along with the Grapeland Chamber of Commerce held a forum in Grapeland to allow the candidates to answer questions and answer one-on-one to the voters about their plans if elected.
In the city council race, three positions were up for grabs, with the top three vote-getters getting to sit on the city council. Incumbents Velda Green and George R. Pierson were faced by challengers Pip McGee, Tom DeLong, Greg Vaden and Paul Adamson.
Voting results are considered unofficial until canvassed and checked, but as of election night the voters had made their choices known, returning Green to the council and electing DeLong and Vaden to join them. The final votes were:
- Greg Vaden – 89
- Velda Green – 76
- Tom DeLong – 63
- George Pierson – 61
- Pip McGee – 57
- Paul Adamson – 39
In the races for Grapeland schools, current GISD Board President Brad Spisak in position one was challenged by Travis Brown, position two saw Twila Ibarra and T.C. Howard vying for a spot and position five saw incumbent Josh Goolsby face Cannon Vickers.
There was some delay in getting the results from the school, but both incumbents were defeated in the race. In position one, Travis Brown got 275 votes to Spisak’s 69. In position two, Howard won 274 votes to Ibarra’s 68. In position five, Vickers took 203 votes to incumbent Goolsby’s 142.
The turnover in the GISD race is still unclear, whether the vote was a referendum on the recently approved four-day school week or if there were other issues at play.
The GISD board met Monday, May 8, receiving some information but making no significant votes or modifications. Read a full report of that meeting in this Sunday’s edition of The Messenger.
Greg Ritchie can be reached at [email protected]