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Candidate profiles for Bowie County Judge's race - KTBS.com - Shreveport, LA News, Weather and Sports

Candidate profiles for Bowie County Judge's race

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Bowie County, Texas -

Politics will be heating up in the new year as two candidates have thrown their hat into the race for Bowie County Judge, the county's top administrator.
    
Earlier this month, Judge Sterling Lacy announced he will not be running for a second term.

He says recent events in his life have shifted his priorities away from politics.
    
Bowie County voters will be heading to the polls in 2014 to decide who will be the next Bowie County Judge.
    
County spending is expected to be the campaign centerpiece.

"The reason for one of the problems is that last year he (Judge Lacy) budgeted $1.2 million in inmate revenue that didn't happen," said James Carlow, candidate for Bowie County Judge.

Carlow served as County Judge from 1987 to 2010 and plans to run as a Republican in the primary election.
    
His priority is to work with the Commissioner's Court to fix the budget.
    
Carlow says Judge Lacy, who still has 13 months left on his term, was spending more than the county was taking in.

"We've got to be a team effort again and not be against what someone else is for," said Carlow.
 
He is also concerned about the possibility of another round of Base Realignment and Closure at Red River Army depot.
    
Officials say nearly $2-billion is poured into the local economy each year from the depot.    

"It's vital to our economy going forward, and we've got to do whatever we can to protect those jobs," said Carlow. "We need county leadership in place, ready to fight that battle."
    
Former radio host and political activist Jeff Akin announced his run for office on the same day Judge Lacy made the announcement not to seek re-election.  

"I believe in small limited government, I believe in a government that is constitutional and transparent, I want to see that happen," said Akin.

He has covered politics for 33 years in broadcasting and says he'll bring a fresh perspective to office.

Akin says taxes is a big issue from the top down.

"We're over taxed, we have money being spent, that in my opinion, may not be spent in the best ways," explained Akin.

He says residents should have access to their government.
    
Akin wants to see night meetings of the Commissioner's Court and the checkbook online.

"I want to make sure we are spending the money wisely, constitutionally, and are we really fulfilling the dictates put forth by the Texas constitution," said Akin.

The primary election is set for March 3rd.
    
Meanwhile, Jeff Akin also is suing the county.  
    
He claims it makes illegal donations to area groups and cities.
    
Akin wants a permanent injunction to stop the county from giving the money to the named cities and agencies.
    
He say the lawsuit could have an impact on the election, but he didn't do it for that purpose.
    
Carlow says he's concerned about how the lawsuit will impact area fire response services if financial help from the county is stopped.

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