Early voting for a countywide referendum on an Extraco Events Center overhaul, a Waco City Council seat and a host of other city and school district seats starts Monday.

Early voting runs through May 2, and Election Day is May 6.

McLennan County voters will decide if the Extraco Events Center will receive an estimated $34.4 million face-lift, paid for with a 2 percent hotel occupancy tax and a 5 percent tax on short-term car rentals.

The plan includes a new 80,000-square-foot multipurpose center connected to the existing coliseum and 300 new livestock stalls. Waco ISD’s Paul Tyson Field and the Lake Air Little League facilities would be rebuilt and relocated within the 60-acre fairgrounds area to make the layout more logical for the multiple users.

The fairgrounds’ annual economic impact could jump from $47 million to $60 million, according to a Baylor University study. County leaders hope to attract more and bigger athletic tournaments, exhibits, horse shows and other events after the renovation.    > Read more

Waco Councilman Jim Holmes, who represents West Waco and the China Spring area, faces Deanna Leach, a craniosacral therapist, for a two-year term.

The city council appointed Holmes, an investment banker, to the District 5 seat in June after Mayor Kyle Deaver vacated the seat to take the mayor position.   > Read more

Across the county

Along with these two elections, races for the Bellmead City Council, Lacy Lakeview City Council, Lorena ISD Board of Trustees and Midway ISD Board of Trustees are included within the county’s joint general election.

In Bellmead, incumbent Travis Gibson faces newcomers Linda Ione Robinson and George Melvin Cleveland.  > Read more

In Lacy Lakeview, with three at-large seats on the ballot, incumbents Barbara Seitz and Bruce Bundrant face David C. Finch III, Sharon Clark, and David A. Garcia.  > Read more

At Lorena ISD, with two at-large seats on the ballot, incumbents David Busch and Mary Timmons face Kristi Rowan Humphreys.   > Read more

At Midway ISD, incumbent Susan Vick faces Eloisa “Ella” Esparza.   > Read more

Three city councils and two school districts are holding elections independent of McLennan County’s joint general election. Early voting is also set to start in the independent elections.

In Beverly Hills, with two council seats on the ballot, incumbents Kurt Vance and Lance Leuschner face LucyAnn Sanchez.  > Read more

In the Valley Mills mayoral race, incumbent Ray Bickerstaff faces Mayor Pro Tem Jerry Wittmer.  > Read more

In Marlin, two council seats and the mayoral seat are on the ballot. Shirley F. King, Demetrius Beachum and John Keefer look to replace Mayor Elizabeth Nelson, who is stepping down. Susan R. Byrd, Cara Kasner and Nancy J. Duggins look to replace Precinct 1 Councilman Norman D. Erskine. Terence W. McDavid and Michael Magouirk look to replace Precinct 3 Councilwoman Billie Jean Scaggs.   > Read more

At Valley Mills Independent School District, with two at-large seats on the ballot, incumbents Alice West and Jim Blackford face Steven Owns, Ted Jones and Josh Thayer.

Voters in the school district will also decide on an $8.4 million bond. The proposed bond is expected to increase the tax rate by 18 cents per $100 of value, according to the district, and constituents at least 65 years old with a homestead exemption will not be impacted unless “significant improvements or additions” are made to the home.   > Read more

Phillip Ericksen joined the Tribune-Herald in March 2015 as a sports copy editor. That November, he joined the news team. He has covered higher education, city hall, politics and crime.

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