Agua SUD postpones elections until November

The Agua Special Utility District Board of Directors agreed to postpone its May elections, joining other cities throughout the Rio Grande Valley that chose to delay their elections until November amid concerns over the coronavirus.

The decision by the Agua SUD board of directors during a meeting on Monday follows recommendations from state officials to postpone their elections in an effort to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, the novel coronavirus.

This year, three seats on Agua SUD’s board of directors are up for election — districts 1, 2 and 3.

Homer Tijerina and Esequiel “Zeke” Ortiz, who are completing their first term on the board, currently hold seats 1 and 2, respectively.

District 3 is held by Franco Lopez who was appointed to the seat in January, replacing Rogelio “Roger” Hernandez.

Hernandez resigned from the Agua SUD board after being elected to the La Joya City Council.

Following the meeting, Ortiz said the board didn’t really have a choice but to postpone the elections in light of Gov. Greg Abbott’s order for Texans to stay at home unless traveling outside for essential activities.

“Based on the governor’s order, there’s nothing we can do,” Ortiz said.

This upcoming election would also be the first since Agua SUD’s boundaries were re-districted to form single-member districts.

Previously, the seven-member board of directors was broken down between five members who each represented one city and two county-at-large positions which representing rural areas.

That changed when last year, the state legislature passed a bill filed by Sen. Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa, D-McAllen, that had each board director representing a district with the same number of residents.

The boundaries of those districts were approved by the Agua SUD board around mid-December and went into effect Dec. 31.