By Betsy Dolan
Early voting in the runoff election for the District A seat in Missouri City is underway. Incumbent councilman Bobby Marshall is facing urban planner and architectural designer Yolanda Ford. The runoff election will be held on June 15.
Ford and Marshall beat out Rodney Griffin in the May election but because neither candidate was able to obtain 50 percent of the vote, a run-off election was needed.
The May 11 election had extremely low voter turnout with just 3.72 percent of registered Fort Bend County voters coming out to the polls. In that election, Ford got 44% of the vote to Marshall’s 39%.
If elected, Ford, 39, who has a planning degree from the University of Houston and a masters in architecture from Prairie View A & M will become the only woman currently serving on the council. Ford has lived in Missouri City for 35 years and has 14 years working in community development and urban planning.
“I believe the inability for leadership to collectively grow the city is the most pressing issue for Missouri City,” she said. “My intent is to propose a substantial economic development plan that will improve property values, increase sales tax revenue, create jobs, businesses and retail locations along major corridors so that our city is a safe, vivacious community for everyone to enjoy.”
Marshall was first elected to the city council in 2009 after the retirement of long-time District A councilwoman Eunice Reiter. Marshall, who is seeking his third term, owns an office supply and printing business, has served on Missouri City’s Planning and Zoning Commission, is active on his HOA board and with Little League.
“Public safety and smart economic development are two important issues for Missouri City,” said Marshall. “I want to make sure we are bringing the services that people need to the residential areas but also attracting large companies to our business parks so that we can ease the tax burden on our residents. We also have aging infrastructure like drainage, streets and sidewalks that need attention in some of our older areas.”
District A has had close races in the last four election cycles with Reiter beating Rodney Griffin by just three votes in 2007. In 2009, Marshall beat Griffin by just 60 votes and by just 33 votes when the two faced off again in 2011.