Doyal takes reins after two and a half decade run by former Judge Sadler

MONTGOMERY COUNTY, TX (KTRK) -- Tomorrow begins a new era in Montgomery County. For the first time in more than two decades, a new judge will take the helm of county government.

Craig Doyal is replacing Alan Sadler, who sat as judge for 24 years. Doyal already knows his top issues.

"We want to make sure that we're ready for the growth that is coming," Doyal told Eyewitness News on the eve of his inauguration. He says mobility will drive the county's future, and he'll push for a multi-million dollar bond this spring to improve it.

"As we continue to grow," Doyal said, "roads become more and more congested and we've got to begin to address some of those issues. And it's going to take dollars to do that."

But he wants to keep spending tight where possible, lowering taxes when feasible. Doyal has served in county government for nearly three decades, the last 14 as precinct two county commissioner. It took a runoff to win a seat he says he'd wanted for a long time. Still, he admits, this new job will take some getting used to.

"There's a lot to do from day one," he explained. Aside from mobility, Doyal wants to be heavily involved in regional water plans, including the use of surface water from Lake Conroe to help supply the southern part of the county. "That's a huge entity for us in terms of economic development in Montgomery County. The values around that lake are critical to us."

Doyal knows his work is cut out for him in a county with more than 560,000 residents, but he says he and the rest of the court are ready for the challenge. His swearing-in ceremony is Thursday morning at 10am at the Lone Star Convention Center in Conroe.
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