A local business man who was raised in Sulphur Springs became the first to file for a seat in the upcoming City Council elections, but he was joined by another challenger later in the day.
Craig Johnson, 38, was the first to sign up this morning to run for the Place 1 seat currently held by Garry Jordan.
Jordan is finishing his third term on the council. He was voted to the panel in 2000 when he defeated incumbent Bill Burney by a count of 665-596. He was unopposed in the previous two elections for the three-year seat.
Craig Johnson is the owner of Kramerica Outdoor Advertising, the company that recently installed a 10-foot by 24-foot LCD screen billboard at the corner of South Broadway Street and Shannon Road. The large screen is cutting-edge technology in the world of outdoor promotions. Johnson said he believes Sulphur Springs is the smallest market in the United States to have such a "billboard."
He and his wife, Chaney, have two sons: Crawford, 3 1/2, and Cameron, who just celebrated his first birthday.
Later in the morning, another Sulphur Springs business owner, Claude Walter filed for the Place 2 council chair currently held by Clay Walker.
Walter, 67, is owner of AES Walterstart on Gilmer Street, which specializes in alternators and other vehicular electrical systems components.
He and his wife, Julia, are active in the Downtown Business Alliance. He also volunteers to help the Northeast Texas Food Bank and can often be seen in the "Weeniemobile" he built. He uses the mobile hot dog stand to sell concessions at community events to raise money for the food bank.
Clay Walker was appointed in 2002 to fill the unexpired term of Mike Shing, who resigned after taking a job in another city. Walker was unopposed in the election the following year, nor did he draw an opponent in 2006.
One other seat on the council, Place 3, is also up for election in the May 9 balloting. The post is currently held by Oscar Aguilar, who is serving as mayor in the last year of his first term.
Aguilar previously said he would file for re-election, as did Jordan.
Walker did not commit to seeking another term after the election was called at the Feb. 3 council meeting, but was being strongly urged by other councilmen to run again.
Candidates have until March 9 to declare candidacy for one of the three City Council seats. Filing is held in the City Secretary's office in the Sulphur Springs Municipal Building, 125 South Davis St.
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