Add another contested election to the May 12 council ballot, with two candidates announcing that they'll challenge Place 5 incumbent Bill Spelman. In a Valentine's Day surprise, military veteran and Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board external relations director Dominic Chavez filed paperwork Feb. 14, announcing that he is running on a platform of workforce education, public safety investments, and ending the "long-term financial instability at Austin Energy." Along with his longtime ally, former Texas Monthly publisher Mike Levy, Chavez and Democratic activist Alfred Stanley sued the city in 2011 over its historic property tax abatements, resulting in an out-of-court settlement. Spelman and Chavez will be joined in the hunt by Texas State University entrepreneur-in-residence and single-member district supporter Tina Cannon, who will formally launch her campaign on Feb. 17.
Also on the ballot: Anti-fluoridation campaigner Laura Pressley is taking on Place 2's Mike Martinez, while Mayor Lee Leffingwell faces former Council Member Brigid Shea, Citizens Communication regular Clay DaFoe, and self-proclaimed mushroom tea party candidate Nicholas Lucier.
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