The Eagle - Your digital news leader
Tuesday, May 13, 2008
        Daily Archives   SU | MO | TU | WE | TH | FR | SA              RSS      Mobile Edition      Daily Email Updates
   
 
 Printer friendly version |   E-mail to a friend  |  30 comment(s)  | 

Published Sunday, May 11, 2008 6:19 AM

Election turns on growth

Election turns on growth
Buy a print

Two incumbents were ousted and one was re-elected Saturday following a bitter battle for seats on the College Station City Council.

John Crompton, Dennis Maloney and Larry Stewart emerged as victors at the polls, garnering more votes than their respective opponents, Derek Dictson, Ron Gay and Chris Scotti.

Place 1 incumbent Crompton's race netted the biggest landslide, as the councilman earned about 3,539 votes, or 65 percent, to Dictson's 1,883 votes.

In the Place 3 race, about 3,366 voters, or 62 percent, cast ballots for Maloney and 2,042 voted for Gay.

In the closest College Station race, Stewart garnered 2,883 votes, or 54 percent in the Place 5 contest, while his opponent, Scotti, received 2,455 votes.

A record number of voters cast ballots in Saturday's election. Turnout usually hovers around 10 percent, but roughly 5,550 -- or 15.39 percent of the city's registered voters -- cast ballots this year.

Dictson, Gay and Scotti worked together on the campaign trail and received support from several real estate professionals and developers. The candidates also rallied support from Texas A&M University students, promising they would not support any housing ordinances lowering the limit on unrelated adults who can share a home.

Crompton, Maloney and Stewart received support from several neighborhood associations and those who felt lingering discontent from a rezoning issue decided in 2006. Gay and Scotti voted at that time for a rezoning that would have allowed a Wal-Mart SuperCenter on the corner of Earl Rudder Freeway and Rock Prairie Road. The measure ultimately was denied.

"I think voters made a statement tonight that they are looking for a city that's interested in its residents and reasonable growth -- not another Houston," Stewart said as the voting results rolled in at City Hall on Saturday.

The political newcomer said he hadn't known whether to expect a win -- but was grateful that people voted for him.

Scotti, however, pointed out that the election was decided by just 5,500 residents.

"I actually think that if you were to poll the city as a whole, I would have won by a decent margin," Scotti said Saturday evening. "My supporters are content, and content people don't vote. Supporters of my opponent were mad about neighborhood issues."

Maloney said the ugliness of this year's campaign may have worked in his favor. About a week ago, Gay sent out a campaign mailer that featured a photo of P. David Romei, a former Arts Council of Brazos Valley director who was indicted last year on charges of theft by deception and misapplication of fiduciary property. Romei has pleaded not guilty.

Gay pointed to Maloney's ties to Romei and the fact that Maloney voted to donate money to the arts agency while he was a councilman from 1999-2005.

"We can't afford to have Dennis Maloney on our City Council," the flier stated.

Maloney said he thinks residents were disgusted by the mail piece and threw their support behind him.

"I tried to focus on the issues, and I got hit with clichés and character assaults," he said Saturday. "I'm proud that people didn't get persuaded by that. I think the election means we want independent people who have a sense of fairness and a vision for the community. We represent what's best for the community as a whole."

Gay stopped by City Hall briefly on Saturday night with his son. He looked at a tally of the results, then abruptly left. He did not respond to a message left on his cell phone Saturday evening.

The race between Crompton and Dictson also was a hard-fought battle, Crompton acknowledged Saturday.

"This is a two-part victory," he said. "It's a victory for our agenda and a victory for the way the race was run."

Crompton said the campaign was often discouraging, as rumors were spread on the Texas A&M campus that he was "anti-student" -- something the professor said he took personally. But those who backed the councilman encouraged him to see it through, he said.

"The people who supported me were passionate," Crompton said. "They worked very hard. They were an inspiration to me. I was dispirited, and those supporters were instrumental in keeping my spirits high and keeping me in the race."

The election results represented an "overwhelming mandate" to proceed with a vision of neighborhood integrity, making growth pay for itself and greening the community, Crompton said.

Maloney said he's on board with Crompton's agenda and is looking forward to the city's future.

"I think he's a real visionary," Maloney said. "I wouldn't want to win without him."

Dictson, Crompton's opponent, said he was happy with the way he ran his campaign. The first-time candidate watched early results at City Hall with his family but left with several precincts remaining.

"We gave folks a choice," he said when reached by cell phone after the final votes were counted. "That's the way it works. I wish Dr. Crompton and the rest of the council the best."

• April Avison's e-mail address is april.avison@theeagle.com.


Comments
Title:


Comment:


Your Name: (optional - shown on website)


captcha c1205668952d4f99a5d5765a58baeb8c


Enter text seen above:





30 comment(s) found!


Posted by: On: 5/12/2008

Comment Title: Just another Homeowner
When voting in an election for your city you must look at the records of your incumbent and trust the words of the candidates. I voted against Ron Gay based on this thought process. I still remember with disgust the evening my husband and I sat in the meeting where we, the constituency of CS, heard Ron Gay tell us essentially-How dare we [the homeowner] think we should have anything to say about how the land around us is used, us with our measly little 1/4 acre lots. Well, I don't know about the rest of CS but my husband and I worked very hard to acquire our home, and work very hard to keep it. So yes I dare to stand for not having urban sprawl settle 10 blocks from my front door. I am not against growth, we must grow! But please let's do it wisely and prudently. Let's never forget it is the people who move to CS that make it a great place, and their vote certainly made a difference on Saturday.
Report Abuse
Posted by: ME On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: To David Mervish
Okay David, I admit the “dead” line is clichéic. But I am not an artist. In fact I am a Republican voter who understands what communities large and small need to survive. I am just as much a sports fan. College Station is fortunate to have Texas A&M to build a sports facilities for local events. Many communities are faced today in building sports facilities whether for their local high schools or big money professional teams just to have sports. Somehow public funding always comes to play. But I also know many people who feel that same about sports as you do about arts. In a heated discussion once I had to ask a professor who complained about the money A&M offered Billy Gillispie if he (the professor) could demand $1 million to stay and teach. Of course he couldn’t he told me. My answer to him was Billy Gillispie could. And if you don’t like tax dollars supporting the arts, then I guess along with those games goes the Fightin' Texas Aggie Band as well. Oh, but I guess that’s not art!
Report Abuse
Posted by: david mervish On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: it is my 30 cents
ME... whether 30 cents or 300 dollars, it is my money. If you came up to me, grabbed my wallet and took 30 cents, that would be considered illegal. Why should it then be ok (legal) for you to use the power of government to take my 30 cents. If i did buy your arguement that it was a smear campaign, I would say it is deserved. I looked at the arts councils public tax records, and their budget usually consisted of a majority of funds going to salaries rather than passign through to qualifying arts groups. If my money is going to be taken for funding the arts, at least uses it for the arts and not to pay someones salary
Report Abuse
Posted by: another ME On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: Please think, people
If you do the math, each resident of College station is paying about 30 cents a month for the arts. You probably lose 30 cents a month in your couch, in your car, or buying that soft drink you shouldn't be drinking (the reason why you are fat.) The position about whether to fund the arts led by Nancy Berry, Ron Gay, Chris Scooti and all their supporters was NEVER about the arts, it was about smearing Romei and you all bought into it.
Report Abuse
Posted by: David Mervish On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: ME you are classic
ME, your comment ..."without art a city is dead".. is a classic line usually used by failing so-called artists to receive public funding for product they can't sell in the private marketplace. If I want to support the arts, I do it on my own. I don't want someone to use the power of government to force me to pay for what you consider art. By the way, if you really want to be melodramatic about the death of College Station, let's fully fund the arts but ban the aggies from playing home football games for 2 years and see what happens to this community.
Report Abuse
Posted by: ME On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: To LJ
LJ, I am sorry you see art that way because there is a lot more to it than just entertainment. Since that is the way you feel however, I hope that you exercised your right to vote for Mr. Gay, as I did to vote against him. Don’t we live in a wonderful country!
Report Abuse
Posted by: Slickspotter On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: A Tale of Two Political Newcomers
One newcomer possesses a great deal of personal integrity. Stewart served his country magnificently in war and in peace. His experience as a business executive is unequaled on the council. Stewart ran an honest and clean campaign. He won his race. The other newcomer, Dictson, ran a campaign of misinformation, deception and full of personal attacks on his opponent. He used his family as a political prop in his ads and personal appearances. He tried to manipulate University students with deliberate distortions of his opponent's record. His campaign was too slick by half. He lost badly and deservedly so.
Report Abuse
Posted by: LJ On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: no public funding for the arts
To ME - a community without the arts is a perfectly fine community. Why do you, the art lover, insist on having me, an art hater, pay for your entertainment? Yes, there were issues of mismanagement with the arts council under Romei, but Gay's position wasn't to punish the arts council, but to reduce/eliminate wasteful taxpayer funding on arts. If you want arts in B/CS, open your wallet and keep your hands off mine.
Report Abuse
Posted by: ME On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: Thanks For Letting Me Know By Mail
I want to thank Mr. Gay for sending out his negative piece, for without it I would have never known that he did not support the Arts Council. To take the position he did of voting against arts funding to punish the community for the alleged activities of one person is ridiculous. Without art a community is dead. I am glad that Gay was so vocal and boastful about it in his mail piece because without it, I would not have known his idiotic position and gone with my wife out to specifically vote against him… much less voted in this election at all. Congratulations Mr. Gay, you got out the vote of two first time voters, thank you for bringing it to our attention. Maybe now you will go out and discover the arts in the area with the new found time you have.
Report Abuse
Posted by: David Mervish On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: what a joke
build what I want where I want it, and that is "smart growth". Build what you want where you want it, and that is "sprawl". I would love to see this council do good things for the city, but I imagine in a couple years, we will be hearing from these council members... "don't look at the unintended results of our actions just look at the good intentions we had"
Report Abuse
Posted by: Conrad On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: Seen it before.
Moved here from the east. Saw a community "go green" and there was a lot of bellyaching from people who wanted it to be a cheap place to live. Yeah, cheap. The eventual result was, the slash-and-burn developers went further out to the boondocks and upscale developers moved in.
Report Abuse
Posted by: On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title:
I heard Ron "The Penguin" Gay is losing his job at Scott and White. They said he's never in his office because he's on every committee in town.
Report Abuse
Posted by: On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title:
I heard Ron is moving to New Jersey! Whoopie!
Report Abuse
Posted by: On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: I'm Gay!
Ding dong, the witch is dead... Yeah! ron gay is gone! I'm melting!
Report Abuse
Posted by: Dave B On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: Mr Scotti and polls
Sorry to break it to you Chris, but the only poll that matters was the one you lost yesterday.
Report Abuse
Posted by: LJ On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: more tax and spend coming to CS
Congrats to CS, we'll be spending more money than ever with two big spenders added to the council, especially on "zero return on investment" pet projects. Yeah, I'm talking about the arts council, conference center, and city center boondoggle. Unless this new council produces a tax cut in the next 180 days (unlikely), I'm leaving this elistist den on tax and spend. Maloney, McIlheney, White, and Crompton will gladly take your hard earned money and flush it down the toilet.
Report Abuse
Posted by: Doris On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title:
These candidates won because they ran good campaigns based on controlled growth, neighborhood protection, and support of the arts. Romei stole money from the arts he supposedly promoted and will soon be in prison. It was an awful smear on Maloney to associate him with that and that did hurt Gay. Chris Peterson can now add three more failed campaigns to his long list of losses.
Report Abuse
Posted by: Bubba On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: Dirty campaigning
Take note: Chris Petersen and Ron Gay lost this one not only for themselves, but for Scotti and Dictson as well. There is no place for this kind of politicking in our community, and the voters will continue to boot out bullies with poor agendas.
Report Abuse
Posted by: Jdub On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: Dumbest political comment ever?
"I actually think that if you were to poll the city as a whole, I would have won by a decent margin," Scotti said Saturday Thank you for changing the matrix of electorate success Hillar....er...Councilman Scotti.
Report Abuse
Posted by: RVP On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: Majority?
Funny Mr. Scotti. You didn't have a problem with the 7% of voters who put you in office three years ago, but you do with the 15 % who vote now? Sour grapes?
Report Abuse
Posted by: Arts lover On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: Gib
I agree with Gib Sawtelle. It's time to call the dogs off David once and for all. We know who the real demon is at the arts council and soon he will be exposed in more ways than one. this election was about bringing sanity back to our community, and Crompton, Maloney and Stewart will do that for sure.
Report Abuse
Posted by: Joy On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: Gay vs. Maloney
Maloney helped name the P. David Romei Arts Center. Gay, Berry and Scotti tried to destroy Romei and smear him unfairly. Romei stands with dignity. Berry, Scotti and Gay have all been soundly rejected by the voters! Take note.
Report Abuse
Posted by: Nancy On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: Bought and Sold
Ron Gay thought he could buy those arts people with Scott and White's money. Thought he could buy developers with city money. Now he can go back to dunkin donuts.
Report Abuse
Posted by: Gib Sawtelle On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title:
Like many citizens, I think Ron Gay exercised the poorest judgment when he sent out a campaign mailer that featured a photo of P. David Romei. Romei has pleaded not guilty and he will have his day in court so that a jury can decide his guilt or innocence. The last time I checked the constitution, I seem to remember that a man is innocent until proven guilty. We now have a situation where Romei's attorneys will more easily be able to claim that they will not be able to find a fair and impartial jury in our community. If this argument is supported by the court, then we're looking at a change in venue and a more expensive process that we taxpayers will have to bear. Only a desperate candidate would have resorted to this kind of foolishness at the expense of another person's chances to get a fair trial and our community's ability to see justice done.
Report Abuse
Posted by: W.S. On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: Round 'em up
The new council should go to the city attorney's office, round 'em up and clear 'em out. Been there too long, time to go! Time for the city manager to run city business, not a paranoid lawyer!
Report Abuse
Posted by: On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: Loser
Chris Petersen can now send a post card to 4,000 homes in College Station with Ron Gay's picture stamped with the word LOSER.
Report Abuse
Posted by: On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title:
The voters fired Gay last night. Scott & White needs to do the right thing now. He's an embarrassment to our community.
Report Abuse
Posted by: PestControl On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: Abruptly left
"Gay stopped by City Hall briefly on Saturday night with his son. He looked at a tally of the results, then abruptly left. He did not respond to a message left on his cell phone Saturday evening." So much for the cockroach!
Report Abuse
Posted by: On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title: For Once
Ron Gay said the right thing. Nothing.
Report Abuse
Posted by: On: 5/11/2008

Comment Title:
Wow, how the people have spoken! I didn't expect such a landslide, but I'm excited by the outcome. The people of College Station really do want to have control over the kind of city they live in. Mr. Scotti's dead wrong. The will of the majority has been expressed. Quality of life triumphs over the fast buck!
Report Abuse


 

 
    MOST POPULAR

 
    TOP ADS
  • Jobs
  • Cars
  • Homes
  • Merchandise
undefined

undefined

undefined

HAZMAT DRIVERS:Local Fuel DeliveryHOME DAILYMust be 25, 2+ Yrs ExpTX licens ... More Details

MANAGEMENT:Clinic Manager Looking for a leader in a multi-provider communit ... More Details

CUSTOMER SERVICE REPRESENTATIVE: Network Finance looking for an outgoing an ... More Details

NUTRITIONISTGreat Opportunity! Full time nutritionist needed for BVCAA &# ... More Details

Quick Hire!15 ImmediateOpenings!Evening shifts.Earn up to $8-$15/hr. Plus B ... More Details

MEDICAL:EXCITING OPPORTUNITY! Medical Office Staff – looking for a per ... More Details

COOK:The Early Head Start Center is looking for a Cook High school diplo ... More Details


 


© 2008 The Bryan College Station Eagle
Contact Us | Subscribe/Customer Care | Privacy Policy | Terms of Use | FAQ | Corrections | RSS Feeds | E-mail News