Athens Review, Athens, Texas

May 13, 2014

Braswell wins by a landslide in GBC

Kathi Nailling
The Athens Review

Athens — It was a big day for Jim Braswell in Gun Barrel City on Saturday.  Braswell beat incumbent Paul Eaton to become the new Mayor of Gun Barrel City.  Eaton had held the office for a total of eight years.

The unofficial results of Saturday's election show Braswell received 435 votes to Eaton's 234. Early voting showed Braswell with 157 votes to Eaton's 53 votes.

Eaton said, “I called Jim, and congratulated him after the election.”

Braswell said, “I was surprised at the outcome. I expected the vote to be a much closer race”

“When I talked to the citizens, it wasn't that they wanted to change the mayor. They want to change everything about the city government in Gun Barrel City,” said Braswell. “We need to change the way we are viewed by our citizens.”

Braswell went on to say the city and the Economic Development Corporation are going to need to find a way to work together.

“There will always be differences, but we won't go forward unless we become one, together,” Braswell said.  “Mayor Eaton called me and was very gracious. Our race was a gentleman's race. He needs to be recognized for his years of service to the City of Gun Barrel.”

Once Braswell is sworn in as mayor, he will be required to resign from the Economic Development Corporation,  Planning and Zoning and the Chairman of Boots to Business Committee.

Councilman Dennis Baade and newcomer Ron Wyrick ran unopposed for Gun Barrel City Council.

Gun Barrel City will canvass votes on Monday, May 19. The new mayor and council will be sworn into office at the May 19 special meeting.

The City of Tool will see three new council members. Incumbents Fran Sonka and Ricky Williams lost their bids for re-election.

Tool residents vying for a seat on the council included Mike Barr, Randy Whitehurst, Kathryn Pinnell, Cindy Clounch, Ricky Williams, Frank Sonka and A.J. “Red” Phillips.

Mike Barr, Randy Whitehurst and Kathryn Pinnell won places on the Tool City Council.

Total vote counted was:

Mike Barr, 96; Randy Whitehurst, 80; Kathryn Pinnell, 62; Cindy Clounch, 58; Fran Sonka, 56; A.J. Phillips, 51 and Rick Williams, 39.

Mayor Bill Hash will continue as Mayor of Seven Points. He was challenged by former Seven Points Mayor Gerald Taylor. Hash received 56 votes to Taylor's 49.

Councilwomen Karon Flagg and Cheryl Jones who ran unopposed for the Seven Points City Council, will retain their council seats.

In Caney City, five individuals ran to fill three council seats. Unofficial results indicate Lawanda Robertson, 31 votes; Lamar Mathews, 39 votes; and Randy Reeders, 43 votes,  beat out Pat Mayfield, 23 votes;  and Claude Miller, 22 votes  for seats on the Caney City City Council.

The unofficial results of the Mabank City Council race had John Chappell, Dennis Terry and Shannon Steakley being elected.

Chappell had 111 votes, Terry 103 and Steakley 91. Jody Farrell finished fourth with 36 votes.

In the Chandler City Council election all three incubments will keep their seat in a close race.

Five people ran for three seats as Janeice Lunsford received the most votes, 158, while Gene Giger was second at 137.

Third and fourth place were seperated by three votes as incumbent Don Daniell had 126 votes while Michael Chandler had 123.

James Allison finished in fifth place with 87 votes.

The Chandler results are scheduled to be canvassed tonight during the regularly scheduled city council meeting. The meeting will be held in city hall starting at 6 p.m.