Politics & Government

Nov. 4 preview: Local races

Here’s a look at the contested local races:

District Judge 297th Judicial District

Republican David Hagerman

Age: 56

Occupation and/or main source of income: Chief Prosecutor in the 396th District Court with the Tarrant County District Attorney's Office

City of your residence: Grapevine

Best way for voters to reach you via phone, email or website: email: hagermanforjudge2014@gmail.com or my office at 817-884-1827

Highlights of your current and past civic involvement: member of Colleyville Lions and working at various committees within the Methodist Churches to which I have belonged

Past public offices you have run for or held: ran for the Republican nominee of the 432nd District Court in 2010. (This was an at large appointment by the Tarrant County Republican Executive Committee which was required when the nominee died after winning the primary)

Why are you the best candidate for this office? I have a unique skill set that is a perfect fit for this court. I have tried every type of case that will be heard in the 297th including a death penalty capital murder and several capital murder waivers. These are some of the most highly scrutinized cases on appeal. I understand these types of cases and know the pitfalls and where a judge can be reversed if he or she makes the wrong ruling. Additionally, after having served as a Chief Prosecutor in several of the Tarrant County District Courts, I have had a chance to see justice up close and personal. I understand how an efficient, effective court should be run. With my C.P.A. background, I will also be able to keep a close watch over this court's $1.295 budget. Finally, I have a demeanor that will foster a good working environment between the state and defense. My good reputation as an assistant district attorney means that members of both the state and defense know they can count on me to work hard and be a fair arbiter of justice.

What are your top issues? First, the 297th District Court has quite a backlog of cases. If you look at the Tarrant County Judicial Dashboard at the website https://ijis.tarrantcounty.com/judicialdashboard/ , you can see the total pending and settable cases. The Dashboard spreadsheet also shows the total pending cases with defendants in jail. These two backlogs are costing the taxpayers of Tarrant County thousands. To house a defendant in the Tarrant County jail, it costs between $56 and $70 per day. I intend to reduce the number of cases pending in this court down to a manageable level while also reducing the jail population attributable to this court. Another issue facing our courts today is the growth of digital media and digital evidence. As a prosecutor, I have worked with digital media and know its potential and its limitations and the requirements of admissibility. But digital media will soon be expanded to include digital "e-filling" of documents with the District Clerk. Having experience in this area, including the new requirements under 39.14 of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure (also known as the Michael Morton Act) I will be better able to work with the District Clerk to insure the implementation and accuracy of a new system.

Do you plan to limit the number of terms your would serve, and do you believe there should be term limits for the office you seek? I believe it is up to the voters of Tarrant County to determine the numbers of terms I should serve as I am accountable to them and serve at their pleasure.

Should the state keep, kill or expand the Texas lottery? The Cannons of Judicial Ethics prevent me from answering this question

Should Texas allow historical racing at horse and dog tracks? The Cannons of Judicial Ethics prevent me from answering this question

What do you think about casino gambling in Texas? The Cannons of Judicial Ethics prevent me from answering this question

What should Texas do regarding the border crisis? The Cannons of Judicial Ethics prevent me from answering this question

Do you agree with the abortion law passed last year by the Legislature and now being fought in the courts? The Cannons of Judicial Ethics prevent me from answering this question

What are your priorities for improving Texas' infrastructure? The Cannons of Judicial Ethics prevent me from answering this question

Do you agree with the school funding plans passed in 2013 and 2011 by the Legislature and now being fought in the courts? The Cannons of Judicial Ethics prevent me from answering this question

Should open carry be allowed in Texas? The Cannons of Judicial Ethics prevent me from answering this question

Democrat Gwinda Burns

Age: 53

Occupation: Attorney

City of your residence: Fort Worth

Best way for voters to reach you via phone, email or website: 817-654-1161, glblawoffice@yahoo.com

Highlights of your current and past civic involvement: 1. National College of District Attorneys; 2. Pro Bono College of the State Bar of Texas; 3. Volunteer Attorney of the Year; 4. Texas Criminal Defense Lawyer’s Association; 5. Life Fellow of Tarrant County Bar Association; 6. Volunteer and mentor for the FWISD; 7. Provides scholarships annually to FWISD graduating seniors; 8. Board member of several civic organizations including Young Women’s Leadership Academy, INSEAM, Tarrant County Bar Associations, Attorney for the Woodhaven Neighborhood Association, former distinguished board member of the Harris Health Exchange & FW Parks & Recreation Board; 9. Sunday school teacher; 10. Usher board member

Past public offices you have run for or held: None

Why are you the best candidate for this office? I AM EXPERIENCED and RESPECTED! I started my career with the 2nd Judicial Court of Appeals here in Fort Worth, Texas as a Briefing Attorney where I wrote caselaw for appeals on both civil and criminal law issues. My criminal law experience thrived as an Assistant District Attorney serving this Great State of Texas as Chief Prosecutor over cases ranging from DWI to Capital Murder. I have represented the State of Texas before the 2nd Court of Criminal Appeals in Austin, Texas, the United States Supreme Court and the 5th I was privileged to be selected by Tarrant County to serve as one of the first Public Defenders for the DIRECT Court. As a defense attorney I have tried cases ranging from DWI to Capital Murder. I have authored and co-authored published legal articles with former Judges on topics of CONTSTITUTIONAL LAW; PROTECTING THE RECORD FOR APPEAL and ALIBI. I am licensed to practice law in the State of Texas, United States District Courts, Northern District of Texas, 5th Circuit and the United States Supreme Court.

Judge, County Criminal Court No. 2:

Republican Carey Walker

Age59

Occupation and/or your main source of income: My occupation is an attorney and counselor at law.

City of residence: Arlington

Best way for voters to reach you via phone, email or website: My cellphone number is (817)994-1323; my office phone number is (817)870-9198; my website is careywalkerforjudge.com and my email address is careyfwalker@msn.com.

Past public offices you have run for or held: Republican Precinct Chairman

Highlights of your current and past civic involvement:

First United Methodist Church Arlington, Member 1998 to present; Finance Committee; Head

Usher; Youth Ministry Volunteer, Youth Ski Trip Chaperone.

Texas Lawyers for Texas Veterans volunteer attorney

Legal Aid of Northwest Texas pro bono attorney

Downtown Arlington Rotary Club

Arlington Optimist Club; Boy’s baseball coach.

Lamar High School; Baseball Booster Club, Vice President

Habitat for Humanity

Member: National Rifle Association, Golden Eagles; TSRA; Arlington Arts League; Various local

Republican clubs

Why are you the best candidate for this office? My 29 year legal career practicing criminal law qualifies me to be judge of County Criminal Court 2. I possess extensive criminal trial experience as a prosecutor and a defense attorney. As lead, first-chair attorney I have prosecuted criminals for the offenses of murder, attempted murder, aggravated assault, aggravated robbery, aggravated sexual assault, burglary of a habitation, burglary of a building, possession of a controlled substance, and other offenses. As lead, first-chair attorney I have tried to a jury verdict almost every type of case handled in the county criminal courts including DWI, possession of marijuana, theft, assault, indecent exposure, and prostitution. I practice law in the county criminal courts in Tarrant County on a weekly if not daily basis; I have handled thousands of cases in the county criminal courts that did not reach trial. My knowledge of the docket administration procedures and the diversion programs that work and that do not work in the county criminal courts is based on my personal experience in those courts for the past 29 years. This knowledge will enable me to transition from a practicing attorney to judge of County Criminal Court 2 smoothly without the necessity of a learning curve.

In the 2014 Tarrant County Bar Association Judicial Candidate Qualifications Bar Poll, the lawyers and judges in Tarrant County rated me “well qualified” for the office of judge of county criminal court 2. I received from lawyers and judges more “well qualified” votes than my opponent by an overwhelming margin. My commitment to legal excellence is further demonstrated by my 18 consecutive-year membership in the College of the State Bar, which is an honor society created by the Supreme Court of Texas.

County Criminal Court 2 has an annual budget of approximately $500,000. I possess the business background necessary to manage this budget and to manage the personnel of the court. I earned a degree in Business Administration and have owned and run my own law office for the past 19 years. I have dealt first-hand with the wide variety of laws and human relations issues confronting businesses.

Lastly, I possess the demeanor, temperament, life experience and ethics necessary to be a strong, fair and even-handed judge. In recognition of these traits, the President of the State Bar of Texas appointed me to serve two three year terms on the District 7A Grievance Committee that addresses grievances filed against lawyers by clients, judges, or members of the public. After conducting hearings and considering evidence, the committee is authorized to take actions ranging from dismissing the grievance to recommending attorney disbarment. A calm demeanor, a respectful attitude, an understanding of attorney ethics, and a well-rounded life experience were essential to a positive resolution of these important and oftentimes very emotional cases. I will bring these same traits to the office of judge of County Criminal Court 2.

What are your top issues? My highest priority issues are running an efficient court that timely moves its docket and being fiscally responsible with the tax-payer monies allotted for the administration of County Criminal Court 2.

Do you plan to limit the number of terms you would serve, and do you believe there should be term limits for the office you seek? I do not plan to commit ahead of time to limit the number of terms I would serve. I do not believe that there should be term limits for judges. Because judges are subject to election and may be removed from office by the voters, term limits do exist already to an extent. Attorneys give up the practice of law and the client base they have built over the years in order to serve in a judicial capacity. Very few attorneys would be willing to sacrifice their law practice to serve a limited time as a judge knowing that after a few years they would be required to leave office and begin the process of building a law practice all over again.

Democrat Leon Reed Jr.

Age: 46

Occupation and/or main source of income: Attorney

City of your residence: Fort Worth

Best way for voters to reach you via phone, email or website: Phone: 817-737-LEON (5366), Email: leonforjudge@gmail.com, Website: www.leonforjudge.com, Facebook: https://www.facebook.com, LeonReedForJudge, Twitter: @ilikeleon

Highlights of your current and past civic involvement: My highlights are seven years of service to my country and the world as a United States Marine. The Marine Corps had an immutable influence on my life. It bolstered my fortitude, strengthened my resolve, taught me how to think “out of the box,” and it taught me invaluable leadership skills. Additionally, it taught me respect for people of different backgrounds, ethnicities, cultures, races, and religions. In my travels around the world as a Marine, I learned that we are universally bound to one another. No matter where we went people wanted to be free, they wanted to matter, and they simply wanted better for their children than they had for themselves.

I have been involved in numerous community service projects and organizations. All of them were benefactors of the same common core: my faith. My spiritual relationship with Christ compels me to help and avail myself to others – while keeping me humble. It is my faith that told me that I need to be doing more for my community and lead me to run for judge.

Past public offices you have run for or held: I was a candidate in 2005 for Fort Worth City Council Precinct #7. To my recollection, there were six candidates, and I came in third while spending the least amount. I received a supplemental endorsement from the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

Why are you the best candidate for this office? I would like to start by stating that I am not running against anyone, but rather, I am running for judge. I am a unifier. My approach is “roses before rifles” – meaning I try to resolve conflicts peacefully. If it gets to the point of an inevitable fight, then I fight with the intensity and fervor of the Marine that I am. I have the experience to serve the citizens of Tarrant County well, of this I have no doubt. But I also have the temperament to serve as your judge. Many judicial candidates state they will be tough on crime. As a citizen and attorney, I would rather that judges be fair and impartial on crime. Justice should be individualized, not generalized. I will be tough when I need to be, but show restrain when it is needed, as well. There has not been a Democratic candidate run for judge in some 16 years. That means that in Tarrant County, a county of 1.8 million people, approximately 3% of the population has selected the criminal court judges, and a large segment of citizens have not had a voice in our criminal courts. That hurts everyone. My running for judge is less about me, and more about us. I will be a judge for ALL, with justice for ALL.

What are your top issues? My goals are simple: I am about saving money, saving lives, and following the law. I want to save the county money by getting cases resolved quickly and by maximizing the use of specialty and diversion courts. These courts have proven to save the State and county money. There is a cost to incarceration, and most misdemeanor defendants are not bad people. They are typically young people who have made a mistake. Specialty and diversion courts address “the leak.” They require defendants to be educated as to how their conduct affects the community at large (and the defendant pays for the classes), give back to the community in the form and community service, and in some cases receive treatment.

In addition to saving money, specialty and diversion courts save lives. They give the defendants an opportunity to earn their way back into the good graces of the community and not have their names tarnished forever by criminal convictions. When we address the leak, there is less mess to clean up. Although the State mandates these courts in counties of a certain size, they are under-utilized because more judges do not volunteer to take them on. I will.

Lastly, as a judge my job is not to make law, that is the Legislature’s responsibility. My job is to apply the laws in place, and when the facts of a case do not easily fit into a law or come into question, then I will use the judicial precedence and intent of the laws to make rulings.

Do you plan to limit the number of terms your would serve, and do you believe there should be term limits for the office you seek? I have not thought of a self-imposed term limit. Voters have the ability to limit terms. However, I have recognized that sometimes people can be in a position too long. They become rigid, inflexible, and their compassion wanes. My goal will be avoid those situations, but it would be an honor to reach the point where it becomes a question.

Should the state keep, kill or expand the Texas lottery? N/A to my candidacy

Should Texas allow historical racing at horse and dog tracks? N/A to my candidacy

What do you think about casino gambling in Texas? N/A to my candidacy

What should Texas do regarding the border crisis? N/A to my candidacy

Do you agree with the abortion law passed last year by the Legislature and now being fought in the courts? N/A to my candidacy

What are your priorities for improving Texas' infrastructure? N/A to my candidacy

Do you agree with the school funding plans passed in 2013 and 2011 by the Legislature and now being fought in the courts? N/A to my candidacy

Should open carry be allowed in Texas? N/A to my candidacy

District Clerk

Republican Tom Wilder (i)

Age: 70

Occupation and/or main source of income: Elected Official's Salary

City of your residence: Bedford

Best way for voters to reach you via phone, email or website: Official business: 817-884-1575; dclerk@tarrantcounty.com, www.tarrantcounty.com/edistrictclerk; Political or personal: tawilder@flash.net; www.wildercampaign.com

Highlights of your current and past civic involvement: 1. Board of Directors - Real Estate Center @Texas A&M 1987-1994; 2. Mid Cities Rotary Club - 1983-present; past president;Paul Harris Fellow; 3. Northeast Leaders Forum - 1995 - present

Past public offices you have run for or held: District Clerk - elected 1994-present; County Commissioner - 1984 & 1988

Why are you the best candidate for this office? 1. 20 yrs of cost effective award winning management of District Clerk office (see website); 2. Over 500 hours of continuing education for District Clerk Office (TX A&M & UT Law School); 3. 30 yrs successful business experience

What are your top issues? 1. Continue cost effective management; 2. Participate in build-out of new court case management system; 3. Continue to participate on county building committees

Do you plan to limit the number of terms your would serve, and do you believe there should be term limits for the office you seek? No, this is an executive office and my 20 years experience is a huge advantage over a newcomer. Could accept term limits on legislative offices depending on years allowed.

Should the state keep, kill or expand the Texas lottery? Keep as long as all revenue goes to education. N/A to District Clerk office.

Should Texas allow historical racing at horse and dog tracks? No, not without vote of the people. N/A to District Clerk Office

What do you think about casino gambling in Texas? Local option basis if constitutional amendment passed by legislature. N/A for District Clerk

What should Texas do regarding the border crisis? More law enforcement if federal government won't move on this. If a teenager can walk or wade across so can terrorists or cartel members.

Do you agree with the abortion law passed last year by the Legislature and now being fought in the courts? Yes, AG should continue to support in courts.

What are your priorities for improving Texas' infrastructure? 1. Roads; 2. Water; 3. Electricity

Do you agree with the school funding plans passed in 2013 and 2011 by the Legislature and now being fought in the courts? Yes, courts should not be usurping the will of the people expressed through the Texas Legislature.

Should open carry be allowed in Texas? Yes, but not in court buildings or bars. Plain language of constitution to “bear arms” should be a broad right.

Democrat Cynthia Toodle

Age: 61

Occupation and/or main source of income: Retired General Motors

City of your residence: Arlington

Best way for voters to reach you via phone, email or website: 866-460-9537 website; Votecynthiatoodle.com

Highlights of your current and past civic involvement: Election Judge/Precinct Chair, Volunteer Chris Turner Campaign, Kenneth Sanders Campaign, Paula Pierson Campaign. Campaign Treasurer, Delegate to County and State, Elector President Obama 2012. Vice Chair Arlington Landmark Preservation Commission, Member Arlington Mansfield Democratic Women.

Past public offices you have run for or held: Ran for County Chair against Deborah Peoples, Randy Daniels

Why are you the best candidate for this office? My legal background as a Paralegal. My clean slate as district clerk. My passion to do the job and serve the public. I am enthusiastic!

What are your top issues? Protecting disenfranchised people. Keeping the courts and records transparent. Being fair to ALL. Giving easy access to court systems.

Do you plan to limit the number of terms your would serve, and do you believe there should be term limits for the office you seek? No to term limits on district clerk. No since there hasn’t been prior

Should the state keep, kill or expand the Texas lottery? keep the lottery but do not expand.

Should Texas allow historical racing at horse and dog tracks? Historical racing I would say yes.

What do you think about casino gambling in Texas? Casino gambling I would say yes, since it would bring revenue to Texas.

What should Texas do regarding the border crisis? Legalize those already here

Do you agree with the abortion law passed last year by the Legislature and now being fought in the courts? No. Let a woman decide for herself what is done with and to her body.

What are your priorities for improving Texas' infrastructure? Do away with toll roads!

Do you agree with the school funding plans passed in 2013 and 2011 by the Legislature and now being fought in the courts? No. I strongly believe the interest on college loans should be reduced they are funding the tax loop holes for the rich.

Should open carry be allowed in Texas? I believe in the right to bear arms. However my concern with open carry is the ability to tell the good guy from the bad? Therefore I would have to say no.

Libertarian John Clare Did not respond to questionnaire

County Commissioner, Precinct No. 2

Republican Andy Nguyen (i)

Age: 48

Occupation and/or main source of income: County Commissioner and Self Employed

City of your residence: Arlington, Texas

Best way for voters to reach you via phone, email or website: 817-405-7272 –

Andy@AndyNguyenNow.com – www.AndyNguyenNow.com

Highlights of your current and past civic involvement: Former US Army Officer, former Chairman of the Board and President of the Vietnamese-American Community of Tarrant County, former Member of the Board of Directors of the Arlington Chamber of Commerce, former Executive VP of the Tarrant County Asian American Chamber of Commerce, former member of the Board of Directors of United Way Tarrant County, former Executive Director of the NCTCOG, former Chairman of the Board of Directors of The Southeast Transportation Partnerships, member of the Board of Directors of Catholic Charity of Ft. Worth, member of the Board of Advisory of Salvation Army of Arlington-Mansfield area, member of the Board of Directors of the Tarrant County Housing Finance Corporation, member of the Board of Directors of the Tarrant Regional Transportation Coalition, Host of the Vietnamese-American Citizen Talk Show on Saigon Dallas Radio, and member of the Arlington Rotary Club.

Past public offices you have run for or held: Tarrant County Commissioner, Precinct 2 from 2011 – 2014.

Why are you the best candidate for this office? First, I have much experience in leading and managing business and community-based organizations. Second, my life experience, as a political refugee escaping Vietnam on a small fishing boat and building a life here in the United States, gives me the tendency to work extra hard and an instinctive appreciation of the liberty that we enjoy in the U.S. Lastly, my first term’s achievements, which include saving over $3M in Precinct 2 budgeted expense, adopting fiscally sound policy, advocating successfully for SH360 South, partnering with Arlington ISD to prevent truancy, and holding the Southeast Business and Economic Development Conference to promote the viability of Southeast Tarrant County as a region, prove that I am a reliable, result-driven, success-producing leader that Tarrant County taxpayers can count on to solve our local/regional challenges as well as capture the opportunities to make our community a better place to live, work and raise a family.

What are your top issues? Transportation: Monitor SH360 South construction and completion, advocate for the funding of the SH360/I30 Direct Connect, and advocate for the completion of the design as well as the environmental study of the flyover at the I20/287/820 junction. Education: Fine tune the truancy prevention pilot program with AISD and Tarrant County Juvenile and continue to promote workforce development. Economic Development: Improve median household income in Precinct 2, work with cities and partners to cultivate a business friendly culture and to support businesses in Precinct 2. Fiscal Issue: Advocate for full implementation of the Governing for Result policy and the Strategic Goals. Healthcare: Work with JPS leadership to deploy the Southeast Medical Home in Arlington.

Do you plan to limit the number of terms your would serve, and do you believe there should be term limits for the office you seek? My service limit to the people of Tarrant County should be based on my performance. As a result, I don’t plan to limit the number of terms I would serve. Term limits is a double-edged sword, which cuts both ways. It can remove poor performing County Commissioners, but it can also prematurely disrupt the high-performing ones. I am open to discussing about term limits as long as the term limit is no less than 4-5 terms, giving the County Commissioner enough time to learn, adjust, perform and lead.

Should the state keep, kill or expand the Texas lottery? Since the first ticket was sold in 1992, the Texas Lottery has brought in $21 billion for the State, $16 billion of which was spent for education and an unknown amount has been spent to take care of our veterans. While we should be mindful of the fact that much of the ticket sales take place in poor neighborhoods, the question remains how would we fill the educational funding gap if the Texas Lottery was abolished? Texas is also facing the same conflict in transportation when 25% of the gas tax revenue (which should be used for transportation) has been diverted to education causing a short fall in transportation funding. Should the diversion of the gas tax revenue be stopped as well? Until the State Legislature figures out how to fill the funding gap, I think we should keep the Texas Lottery. Democracy isn’t perfect. Sometimes we have to choose the better of the two not-so-good choices.

Should Texas allow historical racing at horse and dog tracks? This is the State Legislature’s decision. The Racing Commission acted outside of their authority, I believe. Allowing historical racing at horse and dog tracks would eventually lead to other forms of gambling. Therefore, my answer is No.

What do you think about casino gambling in Texas? Casino gambling would generate more revenue for Texas and more profit for private businesses operating the casinos. I personally know people who lost everything, including their families, because of gambling addiction. I think the cost associated with the additional social problems caused by casino gambling would outweigh any revenue gain, not to mention the moral aspect of the issue. The Texas Lottery has a similar moral conflict. Let’s not continue the approach of solving one problem and in the process, create another one or more problems.

What should Texas do regarding the border crisis? Let’s secure the border first. Then, we can figure out what to do with the undocumented population who are already living and working here in the U.S. Common sense tells us that we must stop the water leak first before we try to mop the floor, unless for some unknown strange reason, we want the water pipe to keep leaking?!?! Also, existing immigration law should be enforced and don’t confuse charity work with immigration.

Do you agree with the abortion law passed last year by the Legislature and now being fought in the courts? Yes.

What are your priorities for improving Texas’ infrastructure? 1) The Legislature should establish a dedicated long-term funding mechanism for infrastructure. 2) The funding should be prioritized based the type of infrastructure (i.e. water reservoir, ports, highway, etc) and its urgency. 3) Allow local and private collaboration/partnership where possible.

Do you agree with the school funding plans passed in 2013 and 2011 by the Legislature and now being fought in the courts? I don’t have enough information about this issue to answer one way or another. However, I do know that education has always been the number one funding priority, and much of the funding that public education received was diversion from other areas like transportation. Should cities and counties sue as well because of the insufficient transportation funding plan?

Should open carry be allowed in Texas? American has the right to bear arms. We also have the right to feel and be safe in public places. We must strike a balance between the two rights. For one right to trample on another is unacceptable. Paraphrasing the words of Andrew Card, former US Secretary of Transportation under President George H. Bush and former Chief of Staff to President George W. Bush, Democracy isn’t perfect. We must learn to accept the perfectly good. Striking a balance between Open Carry and Public Safety is perfectly good.

Democrat Kenneth Sanders

Age: 40

Occupation and/or main source of income: Self-Employed

City of your residence: Arlington, TX

Best way for voters to reach you via phone, email or website: Website: www.VoteKenSanders.com

Highlights of your current and past civic involvement: Current: City of Arlington Teen Court, City of Arlington Special Transportation Advisory Board; Past: Youth Sports Coach

Past public offices you have run for or held: Candidate for U.S. Congress-6

Why are you the best candidate for this office? Growing up my father worked for the same factory job for 30+ years, my mother was a Licensed Vocational Nurse for 30+ years, as well running a successful small business. It was that small business that made a way for my family when my father’s job went on strike. In my parents’ house there were few Sunday mornings that I and my 4 sisters were not in Sunday school. We were taught to have a reverence for God, go to school and get an education. I saw my father go to work every day, no matter the weather.

I believe that you can’t run government like a business. It has to be run with a sense of compassion. It is my compassion for human suffering that compels me to run for office...

... A successful County Commissioner needs to be beyond reproach and committed to servicing and representing the citizens of this county in both deeds and words. For a County Commissioner who will represent the people of Tarrant with compassion, commitment, and integrity, Kenneth Sanders is the best choice.

What are your top issues?

Property Tax Relief: It’s past time for property tax reform. Families are being taxed out of their homes and rents are becoming unaffordable. The property tax system is broken and we’ve got to restore fairness. It’s time to demand fair tax appraisal processes and large commercial properties must pay their fair share. We also must manage growth for the good of the people who live here before we lose what we love about Tarrant County. We must do a better job of making growth pay for itself and stop using public dollars like incentives to subsidize development. Using our funds more wisely to protect what we love about Tarrant County can help take some of the pressure off residential property taxes.

It is time for a fair property tax system that does not burden homeowners nor deprive communities of vital public services. It’s time for real values for Tarrant County citizens. Schools, public hospitals, and local services are losing a lot of money. Estimated total lost revenue over five years from the top 500 properties in Tarrant County is $784.7 million. Out of that, schools have been hit the hardest with an approximate loss of $2.6 billion.

Health & Wellness: As a County we waste billions of dollars every year on preventable diseases and injuries. We need to invest in community programs and neighborhood clinics in order to expand access to preventative healthcare and increase awareness/education. We need to stem the diabetes epidemic which plagues our county. Tarrant County has high incidences of Diabetes, Obesity, and Infant Mortality. We can drastically lower our healthcare costs through awareness, education and prevention of the aforementioned diseases.





o 37.5% are overweight

o 28.2% are obese



Seniors: Americans over 65 are the most rapidly growing age group in America. In the next decade, the over 65 cohort in the U.S. will increase by 31%. Our seniors have dedicated their lives to building stronger communities all across Tarrant County. As they live longer and healthier than ever before, it is our responsibility to help make their retirement years truly golden. I believe that all Tarrant County Citizens have the right to age well, with dignity, and where supportive services are based on choice, individual preference, and the least restrictive environment, and where quality of life is optimized in all public policies.

Veterans: From the days of the American Revolution to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, our nation has relied on the courage and sacrifice of our Armed Forces. America’s heroes merit our respect and support not only during their military service but also upon their return to civilian life. The United States has too often neglected its veterans. The statistics are shameful:

· The suicide rate among veterans is twice as high as the national average.

· An estimated 60,000 veterans find themselves homeless on any given night.

· More than 400,000 veterans are waiting for disability benefits; many suffer or die before their claims are ever processed.

As County Commissioner I intend to make sure we have Essential County services that:

· Help Veterans ease their transition back into Civilian Life

Do you plan to limit the number of terms you would serve, and do you believe there should be term limits for the office you seek? I believe that the people have the right to elect leadership that represents their interest.

Should the state keep, kill or expand the Texas lottery? The Office of County Commissioner does not govern this issue.

Should Texas allow historical racing at horse and dog tracks? I believe this matter is something that Our State legislators should consider the pros and cons in determining whether this can be a method of revenues for our State.

What do you think about casino gambling in Texas? The Office of County Commissioner does not govern this issue.

What should Texas do regarding the border crisis? Protecting our borders is vital to the security of our Nation. As Texans we understand the challenges that come with this issue. Cooperation between federal and state leadership is necessary to providing solutions to this matter.

Do you agree with the abortion law passed last year by the Legislature and now being fought in the courts? The Office of County Commissioner does not govern or create legislation regarding this issue.

What are your priorities for improving Texas’ infrastructure? Tarrant County is one of the top 10 fastest growing counties in the nation. So there has to be an effort to grow the capital infrastructure to keep up with the population growth to provide adequate Roads, Bridges, and Buildings to facilitate and house county services. My priorities will be the completion of the expansion of the Texas 360 to better serve Southeast Tarrant County.

I oppose tolling existing roadways. With more than 1 million people expected to move to Tarrant County in the coming years, now is not the time to sit idly when it comes to this region’s pressing transportation needs. Even if growth projections fall short, anyone who has been forced to sit in traffic on area highways understands the high costs of congestion and sprawl. We simply cannot continue to rely on vehicles and asphalt to meet our transportation needs. This region must be aggressive in encouraging infill, increasing modes of public transportation such as a light rail service that provides meaningful connections between key institutions. We need to tell the State Legislature to step up to the plate and find a real, long-term solution for funding the state’s transportation needs.

But at the same time that we focus on those capital infrastructure projects, we must also focus on growing our human infrastructure. We can’t let growth outpace our ability to provide local safety net services, which is what County government does. We have to grow those systems at the same rate we grow our capital infrastructure. Oftentimes County government is the only thing standing between a person with a problem and them hitting the ground with a splat. This local safety net is here to help our Veterans returning home from Afghanistan and Iraq; to help them and their families in the transition back to civilian life. To help people with mental illness and health problems, provide indigent healthcare to people without health insurance through JPS, the protection of children from abuse and neglect through Child Protective Services, emergency assistance to families that have come up on a rough patch in life....these are all a part of the local safety net that make up the human infrastructure that will be a priority for me.

Do you agree with the school funding plans passed in 2013 and 2011 by the Legislature and now being fought in the courts? Educating our children should be one of our highest priorities. I am confident that our elected State Legislators can find a fair and equitable solution to structuring school funding plans.

Should open carry be allowed in Texas? The citizens of our State should be allowed to determine what issues are important to them. The Office of County Commissioner does not create legislation that would encompass this issue.

County Commissioner, Precinct No. 4

Republican J.D. Johnson (i)

Age: 76

Occupation and/or main source of income: County Commissioner; Retired from Southwestern Bell Telephone Company

City of your residence: Northwest Tarrant County

Best way for voters to reach you via phone, email or website: www.jd-johnson.com; 817-504-5158

Highlights of your current and past civic involvement: Raised 2 million+ dollars for local FFA & 4H youth through the Tarrant County Junior Livestock Show; Current Board Member Fort Worth Stock Show & Rodeo; Recipient of the Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine Founder’s Medal; Past Vice-Chairman Texas State Jail Standards Commission; Past President Texas Association of Counties; Past President West Texas Judges and Commissioners Association; Past President Statewide Judges and Commissioner’s Association; President Tarrant County Bail Bond Board; Chairman of the Board; Tarrant County Housing Finance Corporation; President Industrial Development Corporation; “Outstanding Elected Official of the Year” West Texas Judges and Commissioner’s Association; Member Stockyards Business Association; Northwest Chamber of Commerce; Saginaw Chamber of Commerce; Azle Chamber of Commerce; Elks Lodge; Lion’s Club; American Legion; Past Board Member Tarrant County Homeless Coalition; Past Board Member Tarrant County Council of Alcohol and Drug Abuse; Past Board Member Northwest YMCA; Past Board Member and Benefactor North Texas High School Rodeo Association; Board Member and Benefactor Windy Ryon Memorial Roping; Commissioner’s Court Liaison Tarrant County Hospital District; Commissioner’s Court Liaison Tarrant County Sheriff’s Department; Commissioner’s Court Liaison Tarrant County Emergency Services District #1; Commissioner’s Court Liaison Tarrant County Medical Examiner’s Office; Commissioner’s Court Liaison Tarrant County 911 Emergency Assistance District; Commissioner’s Court Liaison Tarrant County District Attorney’s Office

Past public offices you have run for or held: Nine years on Saginaw City Council (6 as Mayor).

Why are you the best candidate for this office? My record of achieving conservative results without increasing taxes while serving on the Commissioners Court makes me the best candidate for this office.

What are your top issues? 1. No county property tax increases; 2. Identify and eliminate inefficiencies and waste in County government; 3. Support County law enforcement /Sheriff’s Department; 4. Provide responsive and quality County services for families and seniors in west & northwest Tarrant County; 5. Properly maintain County roads and traffic mobility; 6. Provide adequate County infrastructure needs in newly developed areas

Do you plan to limit the number of terms you would serve, and do you believe there should be term limits for the office you seek? I believe every election allows for term limits.

Should the state keep, kill or expand the Texas lottery? I support keeping the lottery in its current form.

Should Texas allow historical racing at horse and dog tracks? No.

What do you think about casino gambling in Texas? I am opposed to casino gambling in Texas.

What should Texas do regarding the border crisis? I support Governor Perry’s decision to send the Texas State Guard to secure our border. We need this additional manpower to secure our border from drug trafficking, terrorists, and human trafficking. On the County level, I support citizenship checks for all county jail inmates and county hospitalpatients.

Do you agree with the abortion law passed last year by the Legislature and now being fought in the courts? Yes.

What are your priorities for improving Texas' infrastructure? I support using excess money from our state’s rainy day fund to help finance state highway and farm-to-market road construction, and to fund our state’s long-term water plan.

Do you agree with the school funding plans passed in 2013 and 2011 by the Legislature and now being fought in the courts? Yes.

Should open carry be allowed in Texas? Yes.

Democrat Steve Lerma

Age: 54

Occupation and main source of income? Civil engineer

City of residence? Fort Worth

Best way for voters to reach you via phone, email or website? Email amrelsr@hotmail.com

Past offices you have sought? County Commissioner Precinct 4

Why am I the best candidate for this job? I have the willingness and desire to serve my community and this precinct. I have the education, knowledge and experience which qualifies me for this position. I earned a Bachelor’s of Science degree from Texas A& M University in Civil Engineering and an MBA from Thunderbird, the American Graduate School of International Management. I have built roads, bridges, churches, buildings, restaurants, stores, etc. domestically as well as abroad. I have a broad knowledge of running a business, construction crews, handling material and manpower effectively, efficiently and economically. I will put my education and work experience to good use for the residents of Precinct 4.

What are your top issues? I believe in lower taxes. This can be accomplished by providing the same or better county services effectively, efficiently and economically utilizing my education and business experience to promote ways to save money for our residents.

The court needs to expand its role in water planning. It needs an aggressive approach to this by participating with other entities already involved in this process. The need for water, due to our rapid economic and demographic growth is essential. This is paramount for our future generations and continued growth. It takes years for planning, budgeting, engineering and construction to obtain water rights, build transmission facilities, pump stations, etc. before any progress can be accomplished.

I would like to see in my lifetime a plan for a true mass transportation system in Tarrant County. We are one of the few major metropolitan areas in Texas that does not have a regional mass transportation system. The creation of one would reduce pollution, create jobs and tie our region together economically. Our neighbors to the East have created and incredible system and we should learn from their success and begin ours in Tarrant County.

Fracking is an issue that many dismiss or shy away from. There is no doubt America needs the oil and gas. We in Tarrant County have been blessed with both resources. I believe there is a cause andeffect due to this practice. I would like to put together a group of concerned individuals representing corporations, residents, business owners, environmentalist, and others to participate in a forum to come with potential solutions to solve this problem. The solutions must be amenable to all concerned. Whether it is the use of new technology, alternative methods, refurbishment, distance requirements, something needs to be done.

Do you plan to limit the number of terms you would serve and do you believe there should be term limits for the office you seek? If elected and there aren’t any health, financial or family issues pending; I would seek three terms. I think this would provide me with ample opportunity to complete the goals I would have set for myself while in office. I strongly believe in terms limits. I believe if in office to long there is a process that occurs that includes stagnation, complacency and sense of entitlement. All not good for the public at large from a public servant. I do not intend to let this occur if elected to this office.

What are your priorities for improving Texas infrastructure? Tarrant County need a mass transportation system. We have the land, infrastructure and the means to raise funds for its construction. It would reduce pollution, create jobs and tie our region together economically.

Justice of the Peace, Precinct No. 1

Republican Ralph Swearingin (i)

Age: 60

Occupation and/or main source of income: Judge, Justice Court, Precinct 1

City of your residence: North Richland Hills

Best way for voters to reach you via phone, email or website: ralph@judgeswearingin.com www.judgweswearingin.com 817-760-0583

Highlights of your current and past civic involvement: I have had years of service on multiple committees involving criminal justice and community issues. I currently serve on the Tarrant County Criminal Justice Advisory Committee; UTA Advisory Board for the Center for Criminal Justice Research and Training; Tarrant County Criminal Justice Community Planning Group; etc. I speak to students at public schools, colleges, and law school, community groups and associations, etc. During my prior policing career, I was continually involved in numerous more community and civic activities.

Past public offices you have run for or held: (The current one only)

Why are you the best candidate for this office? I bring to the Court the knowledge, skills, abilities, education and demeanor that are essential to being a fair and impartial judge. I have more than 30-years of prior law enforcement experience with the Fort Worth Police Department, have been a licensed attorney for 20-years, and have 8-years judicial experience as the incumbent Judge of Justice Court, Precinct 1. The invaluable experience gained from my policing career helps me to best understand and know how to effectively address people in conflict and the issues they face. My legal education and years as an attorney have given me a broader knowledge and understanding of the law that other justice court judges do not possess. My years of experience as judge have only added to my legal knowledge and experience, further enhancing my ability to serve the court and the people that appear before it daily. I was appointed by the Texas Supreme Court and served on the Task Force that rewrote all of the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure that govern Justice Courts in Texas. I am a teacher/instructor for Justice Court Judges throughout the State. I serve as the administrative judge representative for the 8 Justice Court Judges in Tarrant County. I am a recipient of the Texas Association of Counties’ Best Practices Award for Innovation in Courtroom Services recognized for the In-Court Pre-Trial Mediation Program, which the court piloted almost 8 years ago. I recognize the need for diversity in court staff to assist the public, so I have employees that speak English, Spanish, Vietnamese and Cambodian. We are one of the only, certainly very few courts within the State to implement e-filing of civil cases in Justice Courts.

What are your top issues? Continue to utilize the In-Court Pre-Trial Mediation program to help resolve civil cases which helps me to run a much more efficient court and docket, and more importantly the program helps litigants save both time and money. Continue my commitment of the past eight years to see that a County level Truancy Court is piloted to address the underlying causes and issues behind a child’s nonattendance at school. Continue to be accessible to and work within the community, schools, County and other governmental entities and social service providers to educate and assist them when permissible. Implement an Honorary Juror Program for school students. Continue as a trainer/instructor for the Texas Justice Court judges Association. Continue e-filing as a service to litigants in civil cases and expand our technology capabilities to provide a more efficient and modernized e-court.

Do you plan to limit the number of terms you would serve, and do you believe there should be term limits for the office you seek? No and No. I will leave that up to the Texas Legislature and more importantly to the wisdom of the voters.

*** As a judge and subject to the Rules of Judicial Conduct, I will refrain from answering the eight remaining questions.

Should the state keep, kill or expand the Texas lottery?

Should Texas allow historical racing at horse and dog tracks?

What do you think about casino gambling in Texas?

What should Texas do regarding the border crisis?

Do you agree with the abortion law passed last year by the Legislature and now being fought in the courts?

What are your priorities for improving Texas' infrastructure?

Do you agree with the school funding plans passed in 2013 and 2011 by the Legislature and now being fought in the courts?

Should open carry be allowed in Texas?

Democrat Pilar Candia

Age: 30

Occupation and/or main source of income: I am the Field Director for the Alameel Foundation. I work for this foundationspecializing in awarding scholarships to ethnic minorities. The foundation offers free citizenship classes and provides technical assistance to non-profits in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. My boss Dr. David Alameel is currently running for the U.S. Senate in Texas as a Democrat. I also own a small business, Root Consulting Group. The Group’s mission is to provide multicultural awareness and diversity training to non-profits and school districts. I have an amazing group of partners with depth of talent and skills. The Group includes Fort Worth ISD Trustee Jacinto Ramos, Minister Quinton Philips and Dr. Kristen Guillory. Big Brothers/Big Sisters is currently one of our clients.

City of residence: I’ve been a resident of Fort Worth, Texas for seven years. I was born in El Paso, Texas. My dad worked as a Drug Enforcement Agent in Mexico. As a result of his work, I have lived in different states of Mexico. I’ve studied abroad for many years. I lived in China and the Netherlands. My husband is from Fort Worth and I fell in love with North Texas. Some folks have asked about my accent. I respond that because I’m a fluent English, Spanish and French as well as Mandarin Chinese there is bound to be some crossover.

Best way for voters to reach you via phone, email or website: The best way to contact me is via my web site www.pilarcandia.com. My email is pilar@pilarcandia.com. Folks can also like me on Facebook: Pilar Candia For Justice of the Peace. People can reach me on Twitter: @pilarcandia4jp1.

Highlights of your current and past civic involvement: My first contact with the Fort Worth community was as an intern with Fort Worth Sisters Cities International. I was in charge of the Toluca, Mexico exchange programs and the international leadership academy in the Junior Leadership Academy. I brought cultural and international knowledge to the organization. The city was so impressed with my expertise that after my internship, I was promoted to a staff position. I left the position when I became pregnant with my second child. I was involved in the Waves of Faith Ministries. I helped Dr. Juan Hernandez with the Texas Christian University Vicente Fox Presidential Dinner series. I’ve participated in youth mentoring programs such as Catholics in Action, the Fabulous Female Expo/Male Expo, and the Hispanic Women’s Network. I’m a board member of the North Texas Young Latino Leaders. I played a part in the LGBT Saves organization. I’ve acted as a liaison between the Mexican Consulate and the Fort Worth Independent School District with projects to promote parental engagement. I’m partaking in a project that feeds the homeless in Unity Park. I’m a member of the League of United Latin American Citizens. As mentioned before, I’m the Field Director of the Alameel Foundation. I served in LGBT Saves non-profit that focused on suicide prevention for gay youth. I’ve helped with the needs of the homeless gay youth in Tarrant County.

Past public offices you have run for or held: None. This my first run for an elected public office. I’ve wanted to run for public office for a couple of years. I prayed on this decision. I’ve learned that there is a need for more representation in Tarrant County public office. I’m motivated because there is a need in the JP 1 court. The constituents of the community need to identify with their leaders. I’ve had people inform me of the need for new leadership in the Justice of the Peace 1 office.

Why are you the best candidate for this office? Overall, I have the education, qualifications, the time, the energy, the work ethic, heart and passion to serve the constituents of Justice of the Peace Precinct 1. I have Masters in international affairs and B.A in political science and international law. I’ve studied in several universities: Tecnológico de Monterrey, Fudan University in Shanghai, China, and Maastricht University in the Netherlands. I also attended Arizona State University as part of a college exchange. The basic qualification for Justice of the Peace is a high school diploma and is over 18 years old. I believe you should have knowledge of the court system. I learned this knowledge through my Texas mediator work. We have qualified elected officials. However, they lack community involvement. We don’t necessarily want community organizers; but we do want leaders who are close to the community not just photo op politicians. When you’re elected to office, you’re representing the community. I have the education and the background I am fully qualified. I’m a small business owner. I know the needs and resources that will help business owners. I’m a trained Texas dispute mediator and I know the needs of many of our constituents. Before I decided to run for office, I spoke with a representative of the Justices of the Peace and Constable’s Association of Texas. The representative informed me that the office of justice of the peace does not require a law degree. The majority members of this association agree that the Justice of the Peace office was created as a People’s Court. The court should be held in every-day language of the defendant and plaintiff so that they understand the case. In this way, they won’t need to attorney representation. If the Justice of the Peace court proceedings are communicated in elevated legalese, the people will not understand the court process and therefore will not be able to represent themselves. All JP courts do not handle truancy at this time. Fort Worth ISD has created their own JP court. This is unacceptable. At the very least I will extend more support to FWISD and BISD. If we don’t focus on the basic needs of our community such as education, we are doing a disservice. Education is a must. Education is why I’m involved with the community. In Texas we have a truancy problem. If unattended, we’re creating a school to prison pipeline. We must bring the truancy conversation back to the school district. They have no qualified judges handling truancy in FWISD. Why not invest in the community and open the courts. Some judges have developed mentorship programs. They’ve brought youth to the courtroom. “Anybody can earn a diploma, but it takes a true servant to build and expand upon the needs of the community, the people! This race isn’t about the candidates it is about the community the people”

What are your top issues? I would focus 100 percent of my time to the court and my constituents. I will organize the dockets and place cases in priority order. I wish to establish a more efficient mediation program that will enhance the court’s effectiveness to all. I would direct cases that are appropriate to mediation and save court time and expense. We need to have staff development and training. Some courts are lacking a simple concept called customer service; our staff will be there to serve you. We need to cut the gap between FWISD and Birdville school districts concerning truancy cases. We need to educate the constitutions of Precinct 1 of all the resources available to them. I’ve knocked on doors for three months to announce my candidacy. I’ve discovered people don’t know the purpose of a Justice of the Peace court. If people don’t know the services and resources that a JP court can offer, how can we be effective in handling cases and serving the community? The court’s resources include informing people the reason for a JP court. When it comes to small claims, people don’t know that the JP court can handle their case. Often times, they don’t know that they can file the claim themselves without an attorney in a JP court. Some people don’t know how to write an apartment contract to protect the renter and owner. The JP court doesn’t provide legal advice; but we should provide resources and documents. We should provide model contract forms, receipts and work sheets. We can save the constituents time, money and frustration.

Do you plan to limit the number of terms you would serve and do you believe there should be term limits for the office you seek? I will serve the terms necessary to reorganize and bring the constituents the people’s court to Justice of the Peace 1. I will serve as long as the constituents need me. Educated voters establish the numbers of terms an individual should serve. I respect the people’s intelligence.

Justice of the Peace, Precinct No. 5

Republican Cheryl Surber

Age: 58

Occupation and/or main source of income: Small business owner since 1979. Main source is husband's salary.

City of your residence: Fort Worth, TX

Best way for voters to reach you via phone, email or website: Website: http://TCUalum.com or http://VoteSurber.ORG; Email: Cheryl@VoteSurber.ORG; Campaign Phone: (817) 966-1294

Highlights of your current and past civic involvement: (1) Previous Political Positions Held: * 2004 Presidential Elector, * Election Judge, * Precinct Chairman, * Senatorial District Delegate, * Senatorial District Platform Committee Member, * Texas State Delegate. (2) Community Activities and/or Memberships: * Various Political Clubs, * NRA Life Member, * JPFO.org member. (3) Non-Political, Community Activities: * Founded a children's advocacy group for chronically-ill children, * 1984 - 2009 -- Involved parent of special needs child, * Southcliff Baptist Church, * Bible Study Fellowship - Graduate, * Women of Faith, * World Vision - Sponsor, * TCU Frog Club

Past public offices you have run for or held: * Justice of the Peace, Precinct 5 (2010 & 2014 Nominee), * Precinct Chairman (Served several years)

Why are you the best candidate for this office? (1) Motto/Principles: Honesty, respect and fairness are exceptionally important values to me. One of my mottos is: “It’s never wrong to do what’s right!” I have a Servant's Heart and have been supported by Republicans and Democrats alike, in running for JP5 in 2010, and again, in 2014, because I am driven to ensure that all Parties feel they have been completely heard, so that I can make a fully informed and fair legal decision on their issues.

(2) Experience: * Small business owner since 1979, including retail sales, stock investing, real estate investing/renovation, legal research, and energy sales, all of which required dealing fairly and respectfully with people of all backgrounds. * Also worked for various companies in sales, asset management, material procurement planning, problem-solving, statistical record keeping and analysis. * My experience in a 14 year legal case has given me substantial insight and first-hand knowledge of both positive and negative aspects of the legal and judicial process, which I will apply to the JP5 Court.

(3) Education/Degrees: Texas Christian University – MBA, BS, BFA. * Graduated from TCU in 3 years at the age of 20, and earned my second degree in my 4th year at the age of 21. Several years later, I went back to TCU and earned my MBA. * Attended 6 years of public schools and 7 years of private schools, prior to college.

What are your top issues? My top issues are: (1) honesty, respect and fairness in the Court, and (2) instilling the importance of a good education and identifying students’ problems to find innovative ways to help and encourage students to earn their High School Diplomas. Because of my MBA background and experience in both public and private schools (including with Jo Kelly School for special needs children), and because students learn differently, I would like to survey truant students to identify: (1) their reasons for truancy, (2) what they like/dislike about school, (3) what they think would improve school to make them want to attend, (4) what would help them learn better, etc.

Because Judges are not to make law, and/or because the following questions may not apply to the JP Court, I cannot answer the remaining questions.

Democrat Sergio L. De Leon (i)

Age: 43

Occupation and/or main source of income: Justice of the Peace, Pct. 5; Same

City of your residence: Fort Worth, Texas

Best way for voters to reach you via phone, email or website: www.sergiodeleon.com; votedeleon@yahoo.com

Highlights of your current and past civic involvement: In addition to serving as Justice of the Peace, Pct. 5, I have the honor of serving as a member of the Fort Worth Police & Fire Memorial Board, United Hispanic Council of Tarrant County, Texas Wesleyan University Alumni Board and an Advisory Board Member of MHMR Visions of Tarrant County. Additionally, I am a proud member of the Alamo Heights Neighborhood Association and the Como Montessori Parent—Teacher Association.

Past public offices you have run for or held: Constable, Precinct 5, 1996; State Representative, Dist. 89, 1998; Constable, Precinct 5, 2000; Served as Constable from 2001-2012

Why are you the best candidate for this office? I am uniquely qualified for Justice of the Peace having served almost 12 years as the elected Constable for the same precinct and currently serving as Judge. This has given me invaluable experience as an administrator—preparing budgets and managing employees. As a former peace officer, I have years of law enforcement training that adds a valuable perspective as a judge. Additionally, I have completed the required training from the Texas Justice Court Training Center.

What are your top issues? My highest priority is making sure that due process is followed and litigants get a fair and honest hearing. Additionally, I wish to continue our community program initiated with FWISD Schools called the “Honorary Jurors Program” which was featured in the Star Telegram last April. The Justice Court sends invitations to every elementary, middle, and high school and asks for schools to send a group of students to serve as Honorary Jurors and observe live court proceedings. The program has three main objectives: 1. Students learn about the Justice of the Peace Court and the Constable’s Office; 2. Encourage students to seek higher education and enter the judicial or law enforcement profession; 3. Civic Engagement, we encourage students to register to vote and participate in all elections and once they become young professionals to give back to their community and join a neighborhood association or PTA.

Do you plan to limit the number of terms you would serve, and do you believe there should be term limits for the office you seek? I serve at the pleasure of the citizens of Pct. 5. I do not believe in term limits, the voters have the right to limit the term of any office holder each election cycle.

Should the state keep, kill or expand the Texas lottery? Not applicable to Justice Courts/Legislative Question

Should Texas allow historical racing at horse and dog tracks? Not applicable to Justice Courts/Legislative Question

What do you think about casino gambling in Texas? Not applicable to Justice Courts/Legislative Question

What should Texas do regarding the border crisis? Not applicable to Justice Courts/Legislative Question

Do you agree with the abortion law passed last year by the Legislature and now being fought in the courts? Not applicable to Justice Courts/Legislative Question

What are your priorities for improving Texas' infrastructure? Not applicable to Justice Courts/Legislative Question

Do you agree with the school funding plans passed in 2013 and 2011 by the Legislature and now being fought in the courts? Not applicable to Justice Courts/Legislative Question

Should open carry be allowed in Texas? Not applicable to Justice Courts/Legislative Question

Justice of the Peace, Precinct No. 7

Republican Matt Hayes (i)

Age: 57

Occupation and/or main source of income: Justice of the Peace, Precinct 7

City of your residence: Mansfield, TX

Best way for voters to reach you via phone, email or website:Matt@VoteHayes.org

Highlights of your current and past civic involvement: Boy Scout Leader, Sunday School Teacher, Marriage Building Leader, Financial Peace University Facilitator, long time involvement in political issues

Past public offices you have run for or held: Justice of the Peace, Precinct 7

Why are you the best candidate for this office? In my tenure, Justice of the Peace, Precinct 7 has become the busiest and most efficient court in Tarrant County. We are recognized for fairness, justice and integrity by those on both sides of the myriad of cases we hear. I am regularly thanked by even those who lose their cases because of the respect and dignity shown to all. I continually seek out resources for those who struggle and have many victory stories of young people completing their High School diplomas because my court helped put them on a path to success. I also instituted holding court at one of our local high schools to reach out to a segment of community that has trouble coming to the courthouse in Mansfield. We have added an hour and a half to each business day to make the court more accessible to the public, while reducing operating costs.

What are your top issues? Helping teenagers realize the importance and value of earning their high school diploma. My court has a history of success in reaching those who have given up on themselves. Even though the caseload has grown, we continue find ways to improve the efficiency of the court.

As a judicial officer, I cannot answer the rest of the questions.

Do you plan to limit the number of terms your would serve, and do you believe there should be term limits for the office you seek?

Should the state keep, kill or expand the Texas lottery?

Should Texas allow historical racing at horse and dog tracks?

What do you think about casino gambling in Texas?

What should Texas do regarding the border crisis?

Do you agree with the abortion law passed last year by the Legislature and now being fought in the courts?

What are your priorities for improving Texas' infrastructure?

Do you agree with the school funding plans passed in 2013 and 2011 by the Legislature and now being fought in the courts?

Should open carry be allowed in Texas?

Democrat Sandra Lee

Age: 52

Occupation and/or main source of income: Truancy Officer for Mansfield ISD

City of your residence: Kennedale

Best way for voters to reach you via phone, email or website: www.sandralee2014.com; sandra14lee@gmail.com

Highlights of your current and past civic involvement: My civic involvement for the last 22 years relates to the students in making sure that they become graduates instead of dropouts.

Past public offices you have run for or held: None

Why are you the best candidate for this office? I believe I’m the best candidate because I understand the community as a whole. We need someone in office who can relate to everyone, not just a few. We need someone in office who sees the potential in everyone, not just a few. People say walk a mile in my shoes you’ll see what I’m going through. I've walked a few miles in my own shoes. I’ve lost jobs, had a house foreclosed on, car repossessed. I understand what it will take to get our citizens the help that’s needed. This is not political for me it’s my passion to make sure everyone has a chance at a better life.

What are your top issues? Truancy and evictions

Do you plan to limit the number of terms you would serve, and do you believe there should be term limits for the office you seek? If elected I will only serve 3 terms. I don’t believe in term limits. We have some great public officials and I would hate to think their great work should be limited by terms.

— Anna M. Tinsley

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