Palmview mayoral special election brought to a halt

After a judge signed off on a temporary restraining order, the mayoral special election in Palmview has come to a halt.

The special election for mayor in Palmview came to a halt today. Current mayor, Rick Villarreal, has filed a lawsuit against the city of Palmview after the city announced they will hold a special election for the seat of mayor in January.

Villarreal was sworn in last month after being named the winner by default in November's mayoral election, despite not having a single vote. According to the Texas Election Code, Villarreal needed to have at least one vote to be rightly elected as mayor.

Friday, Dec. 14, was the last day the city could call for a special election. According to Palmview's city attorney, Eric Flores, a meeting held on Friday was intended to also take into consideration the Secretary of State’s opinion of having the special election within 120 days.

"That was our full intention today- be fully complying with all state and local laws, however, Mr. Villarreal went with civil litigation," said Flores.

Many say they want a special election, Roy Diaz in particular, “That is my plan- to run for city mayor," says Diaz.

Diaz says this might have all been a mistake and thinks he is a better candidate than Mr. Villarreal.

"I'm going to be persistent. I think the city should decide who the next mayor is going to be not who they want to appoint, I think we should have another election,” states Diaz.

As of right now, the city will not call for another special election. However, that does not mean there will not be one.

Mayor pro-tem, Joel Garcia, believes something like this has never happened before. “This is something unique and hopefully we all learn from this.”

Garcia says that if there is another election, it is anybody’s right to run. “Anybody has the right to run. It all decides on what the outcome is going to be.”

Garcia says he will be running the meetings while the restraining order is in progress and wants the citizens of Palmview to know the city is in good hands and will be running as usual.

CBS 4 reached out to Villarreal’s attorney regarding the lawsuit and restraining order but has not heard back.

A hearing is scheduled for Jan. 8, 2019.

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