By John Kanelis / email@example.com
Election Day always was a big event for those of us who covered politics, policy and sought to keep government accountable for their actions on behalf of the public.
At newspapers where I worked in Oregon and in the Golden Triangle and the Texas Panhandle, they would roll out pizzas for reporters and editors working diligently to collect election returns and prepare them for delivery to our readers.
Well, I get to rejoin the fun again this weekend … albeit in quite a different capacity.
I am no longer employed by newspapers. I work as a freelancer for a weekly newspaper in Collin County, Texas. The folks for whom I work asked me to cover three contests in Farmersville, which is where I work mostly; it’s about seven miles east of where I live in Princeton.
The Farmersville City Council has one contested race on the ballot; the Farmersville Independent School District features three contested races this year. Most of the interest in the community, though, likely rests with the Farmersville ISD’s decision to ask residents to pay for a $65 million bond issue to upgrade all of the campuses in the district. The election will occur on Saturday.
The bond issue would do a number of things for FISD. It would double the high school capacity from 600 to 1,200 students; it would add classrooms to the junior high and intermediate school and would provide upgrades to Tatum Elementary School. FISD officials have noted that they do not think they got greedy with their request, but merely are seeking to keep pace with the enormous growth that’s occurring in the district.
Yeah, it’s a big deal. I’ll let you in on a secret: I want the bond issue to pass, although I pledge to cover the story straight down the middle when I report it for the Farmersville Times. My blog entitles me to speak my mind. So I just did.
This is fun stuff, man. I do enjoy covering local elections at any level. I have gotten to know the community where I work on a part-time basis. I have become acquainted with business owners, residents and elected officials at City Hall and at the school district. I have sought to build their trust in me to be fair and accurate.
I won’t be eating any pizza on Election Night. That’s all right. Just getting back into the election-coverage game is good enough for me.