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Joe Heflin

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Joe Heflin
Texas House of Representatives District 85
Former member
Term in office began
2007
Term in office ended
2010
Political party Democratic
Profession Attorney
Joseph P. Heflin (born January 6, 1952 in Morton, Texas) was a Democratic member of the Texas House of Representatives. He represented the state's eighty-fifth house district from 2007 to 2010.

The eighty-fifth house district includes the rather conservative Western Texas panhandle counties of Reagan, Irion, Sterling, Glasscock, Howard, Borden, Terry, Lynn, Garza, Crosby, Kent, Stonewall, Fisher, Jones, Hale, and Floyd. This makes Heflin one of the few Democratic politicians to have been elected from this region of the state.

Education

  • Graduated from South Plains College
  • Bachelor's degree (in agriculture and business), Eastern New Mexico University (1989)
  • Juris Doctorate degree, Texas Tech University School of Law (1993)

Professional experience

Since receiving his law degree in 1993, Heflin has served within the private sector as both an Emergency Management Coordinator as well as owning and operating a solo private practice firm, which he continues to maintain today.

Political career

Heflin first entered the local political stage when he served two terms as a member of the nonpartisan Crosbyton City Council, a role he would remain in for two years starting in 1999. He was then elected as a judge in Crosby County, a position he held from 2001 until 2005. In addition to these public offices, Heflin was also elected to two consecutive terms as City Alderman for Crosby and was an administrative county judge for Crosby County.

Committee assignments

State Representative Heflin currently serves on the following legislative committees:

Legislation

  • HB 117 - Relating to the amount of a county expenditure for which competitive bidding is required.
  • HB 328 - Relating to abolishing the office of inspector of hides and animals.
  • HB 478 - Relating to automated telephone solicitation containing political advertising; providing a civil penalty.
  • HB 1306 - Relating to the authority of certain counties to use unclaimed money for the benefit of the county.[2]

Controversies

Ethics violation

On Friday, July 2, 2010, the Texas State Ethics Commission ordered State Representative Heflin to pay a fine of $1,200 for violating state election reporting laws stemming from his 2006 campaign.[3] The two-year investigation was triggered following a complaint filed by Montgomery County resident, Jim Doyle. A report issued by the commission contends that Heflin not only "failed to include the occupations or job descriptions for 46 campaign donors on five contribution reports," but that he also failed to properly report reimbursements to both his staff (about $3,000) as well as his campaign (about $267) for personal expenditures.[4]

Speaking with Texas Watchdog, Heflin openly admitted to the minor infractions, insisting that "there was no absconding with money or anything like that" and that "it seems like this happens a lot to first-time candidates."[4] The Democratic state representative did not bother to fight the allegation after his lawyer, who warned him that doing so would cost upwards of $10,000 to do so, advised him against it. While Heflin questioned the timing of the report, just two months prior to his bid for re-election, the legal counsel for the State Ethics Commission argues that "the eight-member panel handles numerous complaints a year and studies each complaint thoroughly before rendering a decision."[5] Additionally, though the Democratic house member believes that the fine was excessive, they can range from nothing to as much as $5,000, so his was on the low side.

Other roles

  • Chair, Crosby County Juvenile Board
  • Master of Ceremony, The Cowboy Gathering in Crosbyton
  • Member, Missions Committee at First Baptist Church
  • Member, National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association
  • Member, Regional Alternative Dispute Resolution Committee
  • Member/Executive Committee Treasurer, South Plains Board of Governments
  • Member, West Texas County Judges and Commissioners Association
  • Representative, Crosby County Appraisal Board of Directors

Elections

2010

Joe Heflin for Texas House of Representatives Campaign logo
See also: Texas House of Representatives elections, 2010

Heflin lost re-election to the 85th District seat in 2010. He had no opposition in the March 2nd primary. He was defeated by Jim Landtroop (R) in the November 2 general election.[6]

He was unopposed in the March 2nd primary.

Texas House of Representatives, District 85
2010 General election results
Candidates Votes Percent
Green check mark transparent.png Jim Landtroop (R) 17,416 61.91%
Joe Heflin (D) 10,713 38.08%

2008

On November 4, 2008, Heflin won re-election to the Texas House of Representatives from Texas's 85th District, defeating Isaac Castro (R). Heflin received 22,865 votes in the election while Castro received 19,970 votes.[7] Heflin raised $244,993 for his campaign; Castro raised $261,808.[8]

Texas House of Representatives, District 85
Candidates Votes Percent
Green check mark transparent.png Joe Heflin (D) 22,865 53.37%
Isaac Castro (R) 19,970 46.62%

2006

On November 4, 2006 Heflin won election to the Texas House of Representatives from Texas's 85th District, defeating Jim Landtroop (R) and David Schumacher (L).[9]

Heflin raised $316,657 for his campaign while Landtroop raised $887,961 and Schumacher raised $0.[10]

Texas House of Representatives, District 85 (2006)
Candidates Votes
Green check mark transparent.png Joe Heflin (D) 14,323
Jim Landtroop (R) 14,106
David Schumacher (L) 793

Campaign donors

2010

As of April 3, 2010, Heflin has raised $23,521 for his 2010 election campaign.[11] For updated figures, check the Texas Ethics Commission Filings.

His five largest contributors in 2010 are:

Donor Amount
Texans for Better Education $5,000
Texas Farm Bureau $2,500
Smith, Paul $2,500
Perdue Brandon Fielder Collins & Mott $1,500
Ellison, Tony & Debbie $1,000

2008

In the 2008 election, Heflin raised a total of $244,993.[12]

His five largest contributors in 2008 were:

Donor Amount
House Democratic Campaign CMTE $10,750
Texans for Insurance Reform $8,000
Texas Association of Realtors $7,245
Hillco Partners $6,000
4 Donors, Each Donating $5,000 $5,000

2006

In the 2006 election, Heflin raised a total of $316,657.[13]

His five largest contributors in 2006 were:

Donor Amount
Texans for Insurance Reform $59,761
Laney, Pete $35,000
House Democratic Campaign CMTE of Texas $25,071
Pete Laney Campaign $20,000
Texas Parent PAC $14,316

Personal

Heflin currently resides in Crosbyton, Texas with his wife, Linda. The couple has had two daughters together. He is also a practicing member of the First Baptist Church.

Awards

  • Distinguished Legislative Service Award (2007) from the Texas Municipal League
  • Sam D. Seale Award of Excellence (2008) from the West Texas County Judges and Commissioners Association
  • Outstanding Service Award (2010) from the County Judges and Commissioners Association of Texas
  • Texas Rural Hospital TORCHbearer Award (2010) from the Texas Organizational of Rural and Community Hospitals (TORCH)

Contact information

Capitol Address:
Post Office Box 2910
Austin, TX 78768
Phone: (512) 463-0604
Fax: (512) 236-0704

Texas

District Address:
Post Office Box 585
Crosbyton, TX 79322
Phone: (806) 675-1583
Fax: (806) 675-1126

Campaign Address:
212 South Durham
Crosbyton, TX 79322
Phone: (806) 675-8076
E-mail: Heflin2010@yahoo.com

External links

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Suggest a link

References


Political offices
Preceded by
-
Texas House - District 85
2007–2010
Succeeded by
Jim Landtroop {R)