First a one-vote victory, then a two-vote flip, and now an upcoming recount: Cedar Park’s important city council race has been a rollercoaster ride that’s not over yet, and the final outcome will have an impact on residents’ wallets.
Candidates Heather Jefts and Rodney Robinson faced off for a seat on the Cedar Park City Council in the May 4 election, and initial results showed progressive incumbent Jefts winning a one-vote victory—2,871 to 2,870.
However, a few days later after officials counted a handful of provisional and late mail ballots, the outcome flipped to a two-vote victory for newcomer Robinson—2,876 to 2,874.
Now, Jefts wants an official recount.
“Through much deliberation, I’ve decided to formally request a recount,” she said in a Facebook post Monday. “The vote count was incredibly close. A full recount gives everyone peace of mind that the voters’ intent was honored.”
Robinson, meanwhile, declared victory.
“I look forward to serving all citizens of Cedar Park and working closely with other council members to continue to make Cedar Park a wonderful place to live, work, and play,” he said Friday after the second round of unofficial results.
The final outcome of the election will have an impact on local residents’ wallets, for better or worse. The average Cedar Park homeowner is now paying roughly $500 more per year to their city council than they did just six years ago—and they could be paying even more, depending on the result of this city council race.
Jefts, originally elected in 2017, has since voted to raise taxes and use citizens’ cash on special deals with hand-picked businesses. Robinson, on the other hand, campaigned on fiscal responsibility.
The May 4 election also saw two other city council members elected: progressive incumbent Anne Duffy and challenger Tim Kelly. Duffy also voted for the same tax raises and corrupt deals during her two years on council, and Kelly campaigned on better financial stewardship.
If Robinson were to join newly elected Kelly on the dais, it could shift the makeup of the council to be more pro-taxpayer.
But regardless of the outcome of the Jefts-Robinson recount, residents will still have to hold their city council members accountable. The three candidates from last year’s election who campaigned as conservatives and won have since gone against their word, joining progressives in raising taxes and giving special perks and citizens’ cash to privileged businesses.
However, if citizens keep their new and current city council members accountable to their campaign promises, there may be a different result. Otherwise, citizens can expect their city tax bill—now $500 more expensive—to climb even higher.
Follow Texas Scorecard for continued updates on the recount.