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August 23, 2013

West to run for county post

ATHENS — Longtime Athens resident Larry West announced on Thursday that he’ll be filing for Precinct 4 County Commissioner in the 2014 election.

West, 60, who has served on the Athens Independent School District Board of Trustees and the County Community Service Board, hopes to become the commissioner for the southeast part of the county.

“I’ve always had an aspiration to run for commissioner ever since my earlier days at the Highway Department,” West said. “Now that I’ve retired, I feel like it’s my season to run for Precinct 4 Commissioner.”

West said he will bring diversity to the Commissioners Court and character, as well as a desire to meet people’s needs.

“All concerns to me are relevant,” West said. “No matter how small one may feel that they are, I feel that as a servant and in a political position, it’s my responsibility to address those concerns.”

West said his service on the Athens Independent School District and Community Service boards gave him experience in the budgetary process, which he believes is important in county government. He was appointed by County Judge David Holstein and current County Judge Richard Sanders to serve on the Community Service Board, which helps indigent and low-income families with weatherization and utility bills.

“It has, like a $1.5 million budget,” West said. “That’s a pretty substantial budget.”

West plans to file for the Democratic Primary when the filing begins in November.

“Both parties have done great things for the county, as well as America,” West said. “I support the Democratic Party, but I have voted for Republicans as well. I believe Republican problems are the same as Democratic problems.”

West said he thinks sometimes government can become oblivious to the needs of the people.

“A lot of times humility is lost from the candidate who has won until they seek re-election again,” West said. “I want to have that humility the whole four years of the term.”

West’s wife, Christine, is a graduate of LaPoynor High School and has worked for the county for more than 20 years.

The Pct. 4 commissioners position is currently held by Ken Geeslin.

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