ECTOR COUNTY - The Ector County Republican Party has selected Dusty Gallivan as their pick for the County Attorney seat. County Commissioners had originally appointed Gallivan to fill the position after former County Attorney Scott Layh was promoted. But the committee realized the spot had to go to an official vote.
That's because Layh resigned with more than half his term left and it was prior to 74 days before the general election. Under state law, the committee is then required to meet and nominate someone to be on the ballot to fulfill the unexpired term which is two years.
The selection was made in an emergency meeting held on Thursday night at the Republican Headquarters with all 14 precincts represented. The committee's chairman, Tisha Crow, didn't give specifics about the vote but said it was "not close."
Ultimately, they agreed with the commissioners that the job calls for someone with a more extensive civil law background.
"The fact that he's really good not just in the courtroom but the county attorney spends a lot of time in his office at his desk. He goes through contracts. He's the legal adviser to the county. That's one of the reasons they leaned in his favor because they knew how important those things that the common people that the average voter, they have no idea," Crow said.
Three candidates were in the running including Greg Conner, who worked with Layh and Cindy Weir-Nutter who's also an attorney in the county. They were each invited to present their case until Weir-Nutter dropped out after hearing about the job Gallivan was doing.
"I was told '[Gallivan] has done more in the past week and a half than was done in the previous year and a half' was the quote and just some really good things like he's turning the office around and that made me feel good about my decision," Weir-Nutter said.
Gallivan said that he's helped the "No Refusal DWI" program take off in just a few weeks which the prior office had been working on for about 18 months.
But Conner feels they're veering off track. Although he's lost the chance at seeing his name on the ballot for this, he said he still plans on being a public servant. Crow said he'd still be a great asset for the county, perhaps in another role.
As for Gallivan, he's just ready to get back at it.