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District 3 race controversy continues

Posted at 5:33 PM, Nov 20, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-20 19:24:44-05

Tuesday morning’s drawing for ballot positions at City Hall was supposed to be a routine event, but it didn’t turn out that way.

While candidates were gathering to determine how their names would appear on the runoff ballot, an attorney for a District 3 candidate was meeting with the City Secretary.

As KRIS 6 News reported last week, a concerned resident wrote a letter to the City Attorney asking that Roland Barrera be disqualified from the December runoff election because he did not file his personal financial paperwork by the September deadline. His opponent is now taking legal action to keep Barrera off the runoff ballot.

Less than five minutes before today’s ballot drawing event was scheduled to begin, Eric Cantu’s attorney presented City Secretary Rebecca Huerta with a petition for an injunction.​

After Huerta consulted with the City Attorney, Miles Risley, it was ultimately decided that the ballot selection event would continue. Barrera was included.

“What our attorney told us was the injunction that was filed wasn’t served by a proper authority, and that it wasn’t signed by the judge either,” Huerta said.

Barrera told us he was blindsided by Cantu’s injunction request.

“I was just made aware of it by the press just like last week,” Barrera said.

Cantu did not attend the ballot drawing. Instead, he held a news conference at his attorney’s office.

“I felt that the City Attorney should’ve made some phone calls and figure out what’s going on. I think that he dropped the ball on it and that he did not follow through and figure out what was going on,” Cantu said.

The injunction was originally filed in the 94th District Court. Cantu’s attorney told KRIS 6 News a hearing would be held Monday afternoon. The presiding judge, Inna Klein, told us she was not aware of any hearing.

KRIS 6 News is still waiting to hear from the City Attorney regarding Roland Barrera’s eligibility to run. That information was requested on Friday.

Nueces County Clerk Kara Sands said unless she hears otherwise from a District Court Judge, election staff will be printing runoff ballots Monday afternoon.