Groves council to see new face; PNGISD trustee draws 2 opponents

Published 7:23 pm Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Elections for seats in Groves and Port Neches-Groves Independent School District taken shape over the last few days.

In Groves, the Ward 1 councilmember Jim Rasa withdrew his bid for reelection on Monday. His would-be challenger, Cross Coburn, 18, had also filed for the seat and with Rasa’s withdrawal Coburn will automatically take the Ward 1 seat in November.

Rasa said he wanted to spare the city of Groves the expense of an election hence the reason for dropping out of the race.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

“I felt I had my shot and it’s time for a fresh face, new ideas and fresh perspective. I plan to complete the remainder of my term serving the citizens of Groves,” Rasa said. “I wish him good fortune and great success.”

Rasa was a council representative on the city’s parks committee and helped design ideas for parks projects.

Coburn, who is a college student, said he has been interested in politics since he was very young and thought the best place to start is with his hometown, adding the best way to change the world is to get involved.

Coburn is a student at Lamar State College Port Arthur where he is majoring in drama. He plans to transfer later to Lamar University where he will major in political science and minor in economics.

The Ward 3 councilmember Sidney Badon did not draw an opponent.

With no contested races, the city council will likely cancel the November council election in the near future.

Two seats are up for grabs in PNGISD but only one incumbent has challengers.

The Place 7 incumbent trustee Darren McCutcheon, 48, of Groves, will face Derek Knepp, 36, of Port Neches, and Jake Joseph Lefort, 40, of Port Neches.

The Place 6 incumbent Rusty Brittain filed for reelection and has no opponents.

In the city of Port Neches the Place 3 incumbent John Davenport and the Place 5 incumbent Julie Gauthier did not garner an opponent. With no contested races, Port Neches City Council will likely cancel the November council election in the near future.

Early voting for the Nov. 7 general election will be from Oct. 23 through Nov. 3.