Although redistricting maps are not quite finalized, Williamson County residents are slated to have a new Texas House district in 2012. District 149 is situated in the Southwestern portion of the county and includes parts of Austin, Leander, and Georgetown, and most of Cedar Park. This will be a relatively conservative district, and the winner of any Republican Primary is likely to hold the seat.
So who's running? Here are the names I've heard tossed around, in no particular order, of course...
Cynthia Long, Williamson County Commissioner, Precinct 2, re-elected in 2008. Locally popular.
Matt Powell, Cedar Park City Councilman.
Tony Dale, Cedar Park City Councilman, former Army Captain.
Stephen Thomas, former Cedar Park City Council, former HD 20 candidate.
Ted Pataki, staffer for Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, and yes, son of that Pataki, NY Governor George. Ted is also a Marine Officer combat vet who spent time in Iraq.
James Bernsen, staffer for Texas Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples, combat vet, and U.S. Navy Reserve Officer.
Bob Lemon, Cedar Park Mayor.
Don Tracy, Cedar Park City Council.
Paul Tish, former President of Brushy Creek MUD.
Bob Tesch, developer, former Perry appointee to Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority.
Mary Dale, Cedar Park Attorney.
Chris Fielder, Leander City Council.
Eric Stratton, conservative GOP activist.
Stacy Rudd, Chairman of the Cedar Park Chamber of Commerce.
Maria Acosta, Central Texas 9-12 Leader.
Corbin Van Arsdale is a registered lobbyist and former State Rep who recently relocated from Spring to Cedar Park; his name has been mentioned by a few activists, but he doesn't seem inclined to run.
Some good Republicans here, but I think by the filing period we'll be down to just a few of the best.
Update: My apologies to all those whose names start with "T" and end with "H." Hopefully I got it right this time...
Update, August 31, 2011. Since County Commissioner Cynthia Long signaled she is not running, both Ted Pataki and Corbin Van Arsdale have announced their respective candidacies. Also, there are still some Cedar Park officials considering a run. Stay tuned...
Update, September 15, 2011. With a new baby, new job, and working on his MBA, Ted Pataki has decided not to run. Like pretty much everyone on the above list, Pataki is supporting Cedar Park City Councilman Tony Dale, who announced on Tuesday.