Abilene City Council Place 3 hopefuls talk water, sidewalks

Election between Williams, Cochran set for Saturday

Incumbent and challenger in Abilene City Council Place 3 race

ABILENE, Texas - Along with the hotly contested mayoral race, two Abilene City Council candidates are asking for your vote in Saturday's election.

Incumbent Anthony Williams and challenger Joseph Neal Cochran are vying for Place 3 on the council.

Williams is running for his fifth tern, while Cochran has lived in Abilene for seven years.  Cochran said he has experience in sales and business management, but that this is his first time running for office.

"I'm experienced handling the stress that it's gonna take," Cochran said. "I'm educated and I think I have the goals and the direction and the vision for Abilene's future."

Williams said he feels his service on the council makes him an excellent candidate for the position.

"I can point to a number of things that I have led and been a part of and I think that we've made Abilene better," Williams said.

When it comes to water conservation and security, Williams and Cochran differ in opinions.

Williams said he thinks we should use all available avenues to secure water.

"I think our water situation needs a comprehensive solution and ...  there's not just one answer, and so we need to have a number of different options," Williams said.

Cochran feels differently, saying he thinks we aren't capitalizing on the water available to us now.

"We should probably take a lot of restrictions off," Cochran said. "I think it's a great idea. Mayor 9Norm) Archibald had a great idea about the (proposed Cedar Ridge) Reservoir and everything and (getting water from) Possum Kingdom."

Another topic, voted on and passed by the city council Thursday, is the need for sidewalks. Williams said the most realistic option is to let the voters decide.

"We need sidewalks, but the truth of the matter is to have sidewalks we're probably gonna need a bond and address it that way and ultimately the citizens of Abilene will communicate how important sidewalks are to them," Williams said.

Cochran said he's more focused on keeping Abilene beautiful so more people will want to live here. He said that takes money, though.

"Bring in more revenue for the city and more business and a better environment to Abilene," Cochran said. "You can give free land tax breaks for businesses to build on. There's all kinds of things you can and then you can advertise."

When asked who they would vote for in the mayoral race, Williams declined an answer and Cochran said he is undecided.

Citizens are encouraged to vote Saturday. Click on this link for a full list of polling places.

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