By JUDY SHERIDAN
Parker County Commissioner Dusty Renfro officially withdrew from the runoff election for Precinct 4 commissioner Sunday, March 9, apparently handing his job to the candidate he’s backed since December: Precinct 4 foreman Steve Dugan.
Renfro submitted his certificate of withdrawal to Parker County Republican Chair Zan Prince. The Texas Election Code 172.059 allows withdrawal prior to 5 p.m. of the 10th day following the general primary election.
The code states that if a runoff candidate withdraws, the remaining candidate is the nominee, and the election is not held.
Dugan drew 48 percent of the vote in the March 4 Republican primary, compared with Renfro’s 33 percent and Fred Hammons’ 19 percent, setting up the runoff.
There is no Democratic candidate.
“I was afraid I might win,” said Renfro, when asked if he was surprised by the 1,213 votes he received while actively campaigning for Dugan. “We’ve done a good job; that’s why.”
Renfro, who filed for re-election early, tried to take his name off the ballot after Dugan filed but was prevented from doing so by a new state law.
He then publicly supported Dugan, endorsing him at meet-and-greet events and “knocking on hundreds of doors.”
“Steve deserves this opportunity,” Renfro said. “He’s been at this precinct almost 30 years, and there’s no one that’s better qualified. I’ve consulted him on court decisions, and he’s always given me good conservative Christian advice.
“It’s never been a career for me. It’s been public service.”
Renfro, who is finishing his first term on the court, said his career has suffered from his time constraints as a commissioner.
“The opportunity cost is very high for a commercial real estate developer,” he said. “I need to go back and get re-focused.”
Renfro listed obtaining the right-of-way for the Airport Road bridge — after a longtime impasse — and reducing Precinct 4’s budget by 17 percent during his first year as accomplishments.
“We’ve kept a careful eye on the general fund budget and what’s going on in the county to make sure we’re on a conservative path,” he said. “It’s been a [Precinct 4] team effort.”
Renfro would like to see improvements made to the Jenkins Road cattle guard bridge — now up for bids — as well as to the highly-traveled Bankhead Highway in the remaining months of his term. He intends to keep pushing for a less costly take-home vehicle policy for county employees.
From an insider’s point of view, the county could do just as good a job with fewer employees, less equipment and a unitized roadway system, Renfro said, with jobs delegated from a central construction point.
“We need to stop worrying about politics and worry about what’s best for Parker County,” he said. “We need professionals, not career politicians.”
Dugan said he is glad to put the runoff behind him.
“On election night I still would have liked to have had that other two percent,” he said. “Renfro made no bones about saying he was ready to go somewhere else.”
Dugan said he appreciates all the support the community has given him.
“It should feel like my birthday,” he said. “Maybe in November or December I’ll start feeling it more. Right now it’s good to be done campaigning and get back to work.”
By JUDY SHERIDAN
- Aledo ExtrA
Water park burglar sought
Hudson Oaks police are requesting the public’s assistance in catching a burglar who broke into Splash Kingdom Water Park in Hudson Oaks earlier this month.
Commissioner at odds with school district's demand for land
Aledo ISD superintendent Derek Citty is moving forward with plans backed by the school board in May — plans to secure two school sites in the Morningstar subdivision, slated for the corner of Old Weatherford Road and FM Road 3225 in the City of Fort Worth’s extraterritorial jurisdiction.
An unforgettable state championship
Corey Kiser and Riley Sartain, members of Aledo High School’s state champion softball team, honored by trustees last week, are to blame for the 10-3 tattoo on the finger of their coach, Jeff Lemons.
Firefighter arrested for child sexual assault
A volunteer Hudson Oaks firefighter is in the Parker County Jail on charges he repeatedly sexually assaulted two young relatives over a several year period.
Richard Frederick Adams Sr., 62, arrested July 21, faces two charges of continuous sexual abuse of a child under 14, a first-degree felony.
Fire protection improving in Aledo
Stephen Watson, interim chief of Emergency Services District No. 1, briefed the Aledo City Council on improvements to the city’s fire protection — including the purchase of a site for a new fire station — in Thursday night’s Aledo City Council session.
Aledo ISD trustees affirm hiring policy
The Aledo ISD School Board affirmed a policy delegating the hiring of most school personnel to the administration by a 4-1 margin last week, with trustees Jay Stringer, David Tillman, Hoyt Harris and Steve Bartley voting in favor and trustee Bobby Rigues arguing that the board should retain the responsibility.
Aledo coffee shop helps support the troops
HUDSON OAKS — Wild West Splash Kingdom was the host of military members and military supporters the night of Saturday, July 19, during ‘Salute the Troops,’ sponsored by Holy Grounds Coffee and Gifts in Aledo and Ducerus College Planning.
Calendar of events
Holy Grounds Coffee & Gifts, at 108 Jearl Street, is hosting a series of outdoor movies in their parking lot at 8:30 p.m. on Saturdays through Aug. 23.
Admission is free and feature drinks are half price during the films. “The Amazing Spiderman” is Aug. 2, followed by “Tangled” on Aug. 9, “The Lego Movie” on Aug. 16 and “The Avengers” on Aug. 23.
For more information, call 817-440-7770.
A Purple Heart County
County Judge Mark Riley and Parker County commissioners proclaimed Parker County to be a “Purple Heart County” Monday, honoring local veterans and their families in a special ceremony held in the second floor courtroom of the historic courthouse.
Suspicious house fire under investigation
The Weatherford fire marshal says a fire that damaged a house and killed two puppies Wednesday night is being investigated as a suspicious fire and a suspect is in jail on unrelated charges.
- More Aledo ExtrA Headlines
- Water park burglar sought