Election 2019: Learn more about school board elections, early turnout and the mayoral candidates | Texas Public Radio

Election 2019: Learn more about school board elections, early turnout and the mayoral candidates

May 4, 2019

Saturday, May 4, was election day for communities throughout Bexar County.

Check out TPR's profiles of candidates, listen to mayoral and school board debates and follow the coverage on Twitter.

San Antonio's Mayoral Race

TPR Reporter Joey Palacios profiled the two leading contenders for San Antonio mayor soon after their their debate on TPR's "The Source."

Palacios explained that incumbent Ron Nirenberg (pictured below) "has inaugurated at least three major projects during his first term. ConnectSA, his transportation plan; the Housing Policy Task Force, which resulted in the city’s multimillion dollar long-term housing plan; and an equity budget, which distributes funds to council districts that have historically been underserved."

Credit Joey Palacios | Texas Public Radio

Palacios wrote that Disitrict 6 City Councilman Greg Brockhouse (pictured below) "was the strongest supporter of the ABC propositions introduced by the fire union. Two passed, marking a defining moment between the City and the union as they negotiate a contract."

Credit Joey Palacios/Texas Public Radio

The mayoral race also attracted lesser-known candidates -- all men -- from a variety of backgrounds and professions, including veterans, teachers and scientists. And they all had their own visions for San Antonio's future. TPR Reporter Brian Kirkpatrick introduced us to their stories and ambitions.

School Board Elections

TPR Education Reporter Camille Phillips introduced us to the issues in the school board elections.

Nine candidates ran for three seats on the San Antonio ISD board. The teachers union endorsed three of those candidates. The union hoped to replace trustees who voted to allow outside nonprofits run 22 of the district’s schools. The candidates for District 5 debated on "The Source."

Credit Camille Phillips | Texas Public Radio

Southside had four competitive races, even though its elected board isn’t currently in power. The state took over the district in 2017.

Harlandale could soon be in the same boat. Its board is under investigation by the Texas Education Agency. All three open board seats had multiple candidates despite the potential takeover. Ricardo Moreno was the only incumbent running for reelection.

The Alamo Heights, Judson and Northside school districts also held trustee elections.

Other Races

Balcones Heights, Castle Hills, Elmendorf, Helotes, Hollywood Park, Kirby, Leon Valley, Olmos Park, Shavano Park, Somerset and Universal City also saw mayor and council races.

Voters living in Bexar County Emergency Services District 8 voted in a special election on a proposition to adopt a local sales & use tax. Residents of Helotes, Kirby, and Shavano Park also voted on similar propositions.

Voters in Windcrest had 14 propositions on their ballot Saturday.

Examine a sample ballot listing the races and candidates here.

How Many People Voted Early?

Nearly 67,000 people countywide cast a ballot by the time early voting closed on Tuesday, April 30.

Bexar County Elections Administrator Jacque Callanen said that was a small decrease from the last municipal and mayoral election.

“When we look at 2017 and what we finished last night, we’re about 2,100 votes behind the early voting in-person votes from 2017,” she said.

Brookhollow Library on the north side of town saw the most traffic, with nearly 6,000 votes at that location alone. The Elmendorf City Hall polling site saw the least amount of activity, with just 87 voters during the early voting period.

Forty-five percent of this year’s early voters were age 65 and over. Early voters age 34 and younger only made up seven and a half percent of ballots cast. There were only 500 votes cast by people between the ages of 18 and 20.