MISSION, Texas (ValleyCentral) — Early voting is underway this week in the runoff race for Mission Mayor. In Hidalgo County, there have been over 2,300 voters that have already cast their ballot during early voting.
With just a few days left until election day, both candidates expect this race to be close.
“I’m very excited to make the runoff,” said Norie Gonzalez Garza. “We knew that it was going to be a runoff because it was 4 candidates”
Garza told ValleyCentral she wanted to take on a bigger role for the city of Mission, after serving on the City Council for 15 years. If elected, Garza plans to tackle many issues including improving parks, roadways, and lighting.
Garza says the city’s biggest problem is drainage.
“The top priority is drainage. We have designated projects, but they have not been funded so that is going to be my priority is to fund the projects that have already been identified,” Garza said. “We had a rain event a couple of weeks ago and there was some flooding in homes and that should not happen.”
In the May 7 election, Garza came out on top with 36% of the votes. Current Mayor Armando O’cana followed with 33% of the votes.
O’cana is running for a second term in office. He told ValleyCentral there is still a lot of unfinished business including funding the drainage project in Mission.
“We identified 77 projects in the City of Mission. The only problem with the projects is that experts estimated that it would be $100 million,” O’cana said. “So, what I have been doing is starting a five-year plan. We have invested $20 million every year.”
With early voting continuing this week, O’cana is expecting the race to have a high voter turn for what could be a tight race.
“On the first day on Monday, we had over 1,200 voters that came out to vote either by mail or in person,” O’cana said. “Basically, from the city of Mission, from the data that I have, it’s a historical moment.”Early voting will run until June 7.
Election day is on June 11.