Joel Quintanilla defeats AC Cuellar for Hidalgo County Pct 1 seat

A major race for Hidalgo County went late into the night but Mercedes Mayor Joel Quintanilla emerged as the winner of the Pct. 1 Commissioner seat.

As of 11 p.m. Tuesday, Quintanilla received 54 percent of the vote while write-in candidate A.C. Cuellar had 46 percent of the vote.

Cuellar had been appointed on an interim basis to replace former Commissioner Sylvia Handy.

Handy had been sentenced in a federal tax evasion and harboring illegal immigrants case.

But Quintanilla won the Democratic Party's nomination to replace Handy prompting a legal battle that Cuellar lost.

Quintanilla told Action 4 News that he's looking forward to getting to work and restoring integrity to the office.