*Update* Adam Fullerton and Austin Guttery have dropped their bid for council. Kim Welch, Matt Wood and Philip Kingston will be running for the seat.* 

Unlike 2015, when incumbent Philip Kingston faced no challengers, the election this May is turning into an actual race. As of Monday, three challengers had filed paperwork to run for the District 14 seat, and while he hasn’t submitted his documents yet, Kingston will seek a third term in office.

“I’m trying to think of something funny to say,” Kingston wrote in an email confirming his reelection efforts. “1) I’m not running. I’m strolling. 2) Of course. How else would I get enough bad salmon and rubber chicken in my diet? 3) Of course. It’s the only reason people laugh at my jokes.”

We found something not before seen in a local race when we started looking into two of Kingston’s challengers, 20-something roommates Adam Fullerton and Austin Guttery, who are both UNT grads. Reached by phone this afternoon, Fullerton claimed he was not, in fact, in the campaign and had never pulled papers, ever though his paperwork has been filed with the city.

“I’m not running, I don’t know what you’re talking about,” Fullerton says before hastily hanging up on us.

Guttery, a local video editor who works with The Ticket (96.7 FM), says that’s par for the course for his Town Hill Lane housemate. “He doesn’t like the mainstream media,” Guttery says. “That’s about what I’d expect from him, hanging up.”

When asked if their candidacy is part of some sort of Andy Kaufman-style prank, Fullerton assures us he’s running a real campaign, albeit one with an odd motivation.

“I’m basically running so that someone else who is running doesn’t win,” he says, at first refusing to identify the person but then confirming that he hopes to block Fullerton from gaining the seat. “I don’t have a platform yet. I just don’t want this other person to win.”

Downtown resident Kim Welch, a magazine publisher who grew up in our neighborhood and attended Bryan Adams High School, has also thrown his hat in the ring. After spending 14 years in New York City, he would like to see Dallas adopt a number of policies he felt were effective, including better management of construction projects, improved options for biking/walking and neighborhood beat cops.

“The infrastructure (in New York) is so solid, I would like to see us move in that direction,” Welch says. “The planning doesn’t work here. We have to change how we plan to change how we think as a city.”

Over in our neighborhood’s other race, Council District 9, candidate Arthur Adams has filed to run against incumbent Mark Clayton, who has yet to pull papers but has confirmed his intent to seek a second term. We haven’t spoken to Adams yet and will post more on that race when there’s more to say.

The filing deadline for the May 6 general election is Feb. 17, leaving another month for more candidates to join the race.

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