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Voters to decide PA City Council, state propositions

Voters across the state go to the polls Tuesday to determine a slate of constitutional amendments, and locally, to elect a new Port Arthur City Councilman.

Four candidates are seeking the at-large Position 7 seat, including two business owners, an attorney and a former councilmember.

Seven amendments are on the ballot, ranging from a push to increase the homestead property tax exemption to diverting sales tax revenue from the general fund to the state highway fund.

Vying for the Position 7 seat is Antoine Leonard Freeman Sr., Thomas J. Henderson, Charlotte Moses and Reginald Trainer Sr..

To avoid a runoff election, a candidate must get more than 50 percent of the vote.

Freeman, 45; is a native of Port Arthur. He is no relation to outgoing Position 7 Councilman Derrick Freeman, who is required to step down from the seat after announcing plans to run for mayor.

Freeman is a Port Arthur attorney and is a member of the Port Arthur Zoning Board of Adjustments. He is a Pop Warner Junior Bees coach, and a member of the Knights of Peter Claver Council No. 32.

Freeman believes his education combined with his experience practicing law will bring added professionalism to the board.

If elected, Freeman said, he would work to bring more activities for Port Arthur’s youth.

Henderson, 88, served on City Council for 17 years in Positions 6, 3, and 8.

Streets, drainage and the need to beautify Port Arthur are issues that have been on Port Arthur’s plate for many years, but lately have become more pressing, he said.

His experience in city government makes him uniquely qualified, along with his ability to stabilize the present board, which has become characterized in recent years by discord.

He is a World War II veteran, having served in the U.S. Navy.

Henderson retired from Texaco, where he was supervisor of computer operations. Most recently he has served on the city’s Charter Change Committee, and is involved in the Griffing Park Neighborhood Watch.

Moses, 52, is owner of Global Drug and Alcohol, a company that performs drug testing for various businesses.

She is executive pastor of Christian Faith Missionary Baptist Church in Port Arthur, and served on the city’s Economic Development Board until she resigned after filing for the Council seat.

Her experience as a former city of Port Arthur employee will bring a unique perspective to the Council seat. She has worked in the city’s human resources department from 1988 to 2006.

Moses said the Council should strive to work more in unison while leading the city.

Trainer, 57, is owner of Trainer Lock and Key, a business that has been in operation for 14 years.

If elected, Trainer said he plans to concentrate on the need to improve city streets and jobs for Port Arthur residents.

The city needs to bring its culture together as one to create a more unified Port Arthur, Trainer said.

E-mail: sherry.koonce@panews.com

Twitter: skooncePANews