The Lockhart Chamber of Commerce, working in cooperation with the Austin Area League of Women Voters and the Lockhart Post-Register will be hosting a series of candidate debates in preparation for the upcoming Nov. 6, 2012, Election.
Candidates running for office in the Lockhart ISD Board of Trustees race, as well as those running in the Precinct 1 and Precinct 3 Caldwell County Commissioners’ races have been contacted and invited to participate in the debates, which will be held the second week of October.
The School Board debate is scheduled Tuesday, Oct. 9, and the Commissioners’ will debate on Thursday, Oct. 11. Both debates will be held in the Lockhart High School Gymnasium (The Lion’s Den), and will begin promptly at 6:30 p.m.
The debates are intended to allow candidates the opportunity to express their goals and platforms in a non-partisan format, which will be moderated by volunteers from the Austin and San Marcos League of Women Voters.
As is standard in a debate forum, each participating candidate will have the opportunity to make an introductory presentation, lasting 3-5minutes, prior to the beginning of questioning.
The moderators will then ask a series of pre-selected questions; finally a series of questions “from the floor” will be entertained. Debate participants who wish to submit questions from the floor must submit those questions in writing. Those questions will be addressed on a time-available basis, and may or may not be addressed, based on time constraints and the determination of the moderator as to whether the questions are appropriate.
In an effort to maintain the integrity of the debate process, members of the local sponsoring organizations have had the opportunity to submit a series of questions from which the moderators have been asked to choose. However, the questions address have been chosen at the sole discretion of the out-of-town moderators, who have no personal or political stake in the election’s outcome.
Under the rules of the debate set forth by the League of Women Voters, substitute or proxy speakers will not be allowed to appear at the debates, but all candidates have been invited to participate and provide biographical information to be included in literature which will be distributed at the start of the debates.
Additionally, while candidates may make campaign information available, no campaign materials may be distributed before or during the forum.
Time and scheduling constraints prevented the hosting organizations from planning forums for other races on the ballot, including the Sheriff’s race and the races for Caldwell County Constables. However, representatives from both the Lockhart Chamber of Commerce and the Post-Register hope to expand the debate series in future elections.
Watch future editions of the Post-Register for additional information on the upcoming debates, as well as for information on other candidates and races appearing on November’s ballot.
Editor’s Note: In keeping with the publishing policies of the Lockhart Post-Register and Garrett Publishing, Inc., news items and Letters to the Editor regarding specific candidates and issues on the ballot will no longer be accepted. Within six weeks of an election, all items in opposition or support of candidates or issues on the ballot must be submitted as paid political advertising.