Last year was a crowded school board race. Five opponents ran for one place on the Sanger ISD school board, but in 2020 an election will not be needed. Place 6 incumbent Mitch Hammonds is unopposed and Place 7 has only one candidate, newcomer Zach Thompson. Place 7 was vacated by Dr. Dale Gleason who decided not to run for a third-term. Place 1, formerly held by Jimmy Howard is completely vacant. Howard has decided not to run for a fourth term and no one submitted an application for Place 1. The board will need to discuss this situation and will most likely appoint someone to serve until the May 2021 election.
“At the 11th hour I had a change of heart and decided not to seek re-election as a trustee on the Sanger ISD School Board,” said Howard, in an emailed statement to the Sanger News. “Over the last 9 years it has been an honor and privilege to serve OUR community in this capacity. OUR district is in great hands with OUR current administration and staff, with a solid board working along their side to help OUR schools strengthen and grow each day. Remember we are all in this together. We as a community should work together, serve more, volunteer often, gossip less and like our mothers teach us, if you can’t say something nice, don’t speak. Social media sites have made a few local people the greatest critics on topics they have no clue about. But when you are uninformed on a subject, what better than to make a story up. I ask you to turn from the “Great Keyboard Warriors” of our community and do something important, like make a difference. Encouraging a student, a teacher, a principal, a bus driver or a custodian, might be what that individual needed at that moment. This is OUR school, this is OUR community, WE should ALL be a part of making OUR students the best!! I challenge the current board to move forward and stay the course of reaching excellence, it is in sight!! Again, thank you for all the people that supported me over the last 9 years. A special thank you goes out to the people who didn’t support me, doubters have always made me stronger and more determined.
For the City race, incumbent councilmen Gary Bilyeu and Allen Chick are unopposed. Current Mayor Thomas Muir, who filed early in the process for re-election has an opponent Joe Falls. Mr. Falls has run for a seat on the council in the past and is running for Mayor in 2020.
Falls, age 83, is the developer of Ranger Creek subdivision in Sanger, an upscale housing project on the east side of town. He has lived in Sanger for 48 years. Falls graduated from the University of Tennessee with BS Husbandry (Agriculture). He believes his age and experience will be beneficial to move Sanger forward.
Falls served in the U.S. Army as a fixed-wing helicopter pilot. After the military, he worked as an airline pilot, flying jets in the USA, South America and Europe. He served as a rural carrier in Cooke and Denton Counties, while operating his Sanger ranch. He’s served on the Sanger Planning & Zoning Board and Board of Adjustments for the city. Falls sees a need for improved infrastructure and better priorities with the money management in the city.
Mayor Thomas Muir, age 50 is a 1988 graduate of Sanger High School and has bachelor and master degrees in accounting form UNT (1993).
He is a Fee-only Investment Advisor / President / Cultivar Capital, Inc.; Entrepreneurial small business owner. His wife and Mr. Muir have lived in Sanger all their lives.
Serving his local community is important to him. “We need to be engaged personally with our neighbors; one outlet for me to do this is through my service on city council. Elizabeth and I have raised our family in Sanger and want it to be a great place for our kids both now and into their future. Because we have grown up in the community and plan on remaining here, we have a long-term vested interest in Sanger being a place we can all be proud to call home.”
Mr. Muir is very qualified as mayor. “As a small business owner, I make decisions that are both short-term and strategic in nature. Sometimes a quick decision is called for, while at other times a long-term strategic plan must be laid out. These types of decisions are much like those made by the mayor and council. These decisions ensure that Sanger moves forward by addressing both immediate issues that arise, while planning out those decisions that can take multiple years to fund and see to completion. In addition, I bring a significant background in finance to the position because of my education, professional licenses and career experience. This understanding of finance is important when considering annual budgeted operations, as well as long-term bond issuance needed to cover major capital projects. It is certainly a balancing act to accomplish as many key projects as possible without overburdening the city and its citizens with higher taxes.”
The election will be in May 2020 and early voting will begin in April for the city and school board.