NACOGDOCHES COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - The eligibility of a county commissioner candidate is under fire in Nacogdoches County.
The incumbent argues a potential opponent doesn't live in the precinct that he is wanting to represent. The candidate remains on the ballot following approval by not an election coordinator or the state, but by a party chair.
Jerry Stone is Nacogdoches County Commissioner, Pct. 2. He has a Republican opponent in the primary, but right now, he questions Democratic candidate Sandy McCorvey's eligibility to run for that office.
"There is no doubt in my mind that he lives in Pct. 4, and he has for over a year," Stone said.
Stone challenged the 4299 State Highway 7 West address McCorvey used on his filing application. It's a place bordering Pct. 2, but it actually is in Pct. 4.
Nacogdoches County Democratic Party Chair Mike Strong has filing authority for primary candidates in the Democratic Party.
"We made a mistake. We had a mailing address on," Strong said. "He changed it back to a residential address in Pct. 2."
That address is 726 Red Oak.
"I rode out there and looked at it. It had a for sale by owner sign in the yard and it was vacant," Stone said. "If you live somewhere you're going to have some furniture and stuff like that in your house."
Stone, a former police investigator, collected more evidence to support his argument.
"This is an application for resident homestead exemption," Stone said.
The application clearly shows the Pct. 4, Highway 7 address. It's insignificant, according to Strong.
"We don't base our voting on taxation or home ownership any more. It's voter registration and his residence where he intends to live," Strong said. "His voter registration is in Pct. 2, had a Pct. 2 address. I thought that was sufficient, and I accepted it."
McCorvey was contacted. He only agreed to a written statement at this time. It stated Mike Strong accepted his application and petition. McCorvey wrote he's looking forward to a well-run election and success in November.
A member of the Elections Division staff for the Secretary of State responded that any determination regarding a candidate's residency must be made by a court. This would have to be filed in a district court with jurisdiction.
Stone said he's not wanting to let this issue go.