However, she cautioned, the petitions will not be verified until they are accepted by the City Council when it meets Feb. 25. Once verified, the council must call the election for May 10.
The petitions had been gathered by a political action committee (PAC) called Gilmer Committee for Economic Growth. They hired a Buda area firm specializing in election petitions to gather the signatures for them.
They gathered more than 430, and filed them with City Manager Jeff Ellington on Jan. 15. While Mrs. Hoover is the top election official, Ellington accepted the petitions because Mrs. Hoover was away at an election school.
The Upshur County Clerk’s office has declined to contract with cities and schools to hold the elections this year, citing limited staff. The Clerk’s Office has also declined to contract with the Republican and Democratic parties for their March 4 primaries.
The parties and entities will have to contract with an outside agency, in this case Hart InterCivic of Austin, from whom the county purchased its voting machines, for programming the election machines and their services.
Republicans and Democrats in the county will also use the same firm.
Mrs. Hoover said that it is expected to cost $6,000 or more to program the machines, with the cost of election workers bringing the total to about $10,000. It the past, when the county handled the elections, cost was about $2,000 to $3,000.
While the city and Gimer ISD have planned to work together on the May 10 election, if the school does not have any contested trustee races, it will cancel its election and the city will have to bear the cost alone.
Ellington told the Gilmer City Council Jan. 25 that the costs will be paid from contingency funds.