Voters pass $17 million bond issue for justice complex

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Austin County voters narrowly approved a $17 million bond issue to build a new justice center and emergency services facility in Bellville.

Election results were issued late Tuesday night, showing 4,843 in favor of the bond and 4,007 opposed. County buildings, including the jail, have been plagued with mold, roof leaks and a lack of storage space, prompting the need for a new building and causing jailers to transport inmates to Fort Bend County, racking up costs to the taxpayers.

County Judge Tim Lapham could not immediately be reached for comment Wednesday morning to talk about when and where the new construction will take place.

Austin County voters also cast more than 6,000 straight-ticket Republican Party votes, handily voting in U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, U.S. Rep. Michael T. McCaul, Gov. Greg Abbott and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick.

Ballots also were cast to re-elect several unopposed candidates including District Judge Jeff R. Steinhauser, District Attorney Travis J. Koehn, County Judge Tim Lapham, County Court at Law Judge Daniel W. Leedy, District Clerk Sue Murphy, County Clerk Carrie Gregor, County Treasurer Bryan Haevischer, Precinct 2 Commissioner Robert Wayne “Bobby” Rinn and Precinct 4 Commissioner Douglas W. King. All were listed on the ballot as Republicans.

A full tally of election results is available at sealynews.com.

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