A Day at the Races, 3/4 Time: Big Races Still Going Begging for Good Candidates!


 Powered by Max Banner Ads 

The four week period during which citizens may file to run for those local offices that weren’t part of June’s primary is 3/4 of the way through.  For most offices, filing ends at 5:00 sharp on this Friday, August 8.  Offices for which an incumbent could have run, but didn’t, will reopen for “overtime” until Wednesday, August 13.

Remember that this is a two-step process.  One can pull papers for an office (or more than one), described here as “filing,” and except where those two offices are incompatible this post treats that person as being in the race.  However, a candidate is not committed to run in a race until they have qualified for the ballot — which they can prevent by not ultimately filing some of the necessary paperwork.  At this point, many have filed, but few have qualified.

Because writing these posts takes for-freakin’-ever, we’ve omitted the City Council races in all but the largest OC cities.  (Want to see your town’s race covered?  Look up whose running on your city’s website, or go to City Hall if it’s not there, and post the information here; we’ll incorporate it into the text.)  Besides City Council, Mayoral, and other City Executive races, we have the Educational Boards (Community College, Unified, High School, and Elementary School) and Special Districts covered.  (Note that party affiliation of incumbents is found at the excellent, although not always entirely accurate, OC Political Elected Officers Database.  Send your corrections as you find ‘em.)

At this point, one big question is what seats are currently going begging — those are identified in magenta — and (pardon my ideological slant) what seats have one of more people running for them but might still be of particular interest to Democratic, liberal, sane, or good government challengers, which have notes listed in blue.  I generally have not checked to see where an incumbent is termed out, but where I understand that a contest will clearly go until Aug. 13, it is listed in green.

Anaheim - Who's Running from Council Majority

From Anaheim’s Council majority (L-R): running, running, allegedly running but more sort of staggering, not running.)

Selected City Councils of OC’s Larger Cities

#1 City of Anaheim

MayorFour candidates have pulled papers for Mayor.  Three were expected: Tom Tait, Lucille Kring, and Lorri Galloway.  One, we shoulda seen coming: Denis Fitzgerald.  I don’t know what Fitz is up to, but it’s sure to be partly entertaining and perhaps partly horrifying.  But, dammit, it’s his right to run.

City Council:  We have two vacant seats and seven or eight candidates so far.

Incumbents Kris Murray and Gail Eastman, of the Pringle Party, are more or less aligned with Loose-Lipped Lucy Kring.  Murray is the priority of the Pringle Party while Eastman is somewhat of an afterthought, which is a shame because Eastman is by far the less culpable and offensive.

Doug Pettibone is apparently a choice of Mayor Tait.  James Vanderbilt had been expected to run, but some chismes are that he might sit it out.  Tait is also friendly with Vanderbilt’s School Board colleague Dr. Jose Moreno.  Expect one (and only one) of them to run. Donna Acevedo has turned the killing of her son Joel, over which she has just filed a lawsuit against the city, into a crusade against excessive use of police force (and, obviously, worse.)

I don’t know who Jerry O’Keefe and Bob Tiscareno are — but I suspect that someone is about to tell me.  O’Keefe is the only candidate who has qualified for the ballot.

Rudy Gaona has also been expected to run, but he might have a better shot at one of the School Boards.

#2 City of Santa Ana

Mayor: Mayor-for-Life (or so it had seemed) Miguel Pulido has pulled papers, with competition from Councilmember Roman Reyna and a Mr. Mark Lopez, but unless some deal has been struck Pulido is probably looking over his shoulder to see if Lou Correa is going to stroll into the Clerk’s Office and run.  Chismes say that Lou is a go-go.  No one has yet qualified for the ballot.

Seat #2: The incumbent is Michele Martinez.  Gilad Salmon, Mirna Velasquez, and Rene Gomez have also pulled papers.  Only Martinez has qualified.

Seat #4The incumbent is David Benavides.  Alex Padillanot the statewide candidate — has also pulled papers.  Neither has qualified.

Seat #6The incumbent is Sal Tinajero.  Mike Gonzalez and Nam Pham have also pulled papers.  Pham has already qualified for the ballot.

Brave prediction: the three incumbent Councilmembers will be hard for the contenders to beat.  Pulido would like to knock them off so that he can get rid of term-limits (if Correa doesn’t get rid of him first), but it doesn’t look like he’s setting the foundation to try this year.

#3 City of Irvine

Mayor: The biggest story in Irvine at this point may be the name that’s not there: Beth’s Krom’s name is not listed for Mayor.  That may be “not yet”; it may be “not this time.”  This would be reasonably benign of itself, as Democrats could vote for Republican  Katherine Daigle and get honest, competent, and non-partisan (even if not especially liberal) leadership, but something (and it’s no communication from anyone else) suggests to me that something may be up.  Unlike Republicans Steven Choi, Jeff Lalloway, and Lynn Schott, as well as Evan Chemers, former Mayor Larry Agran and leading Democratic challenger Melissa Fox have not turned in the papers required to qualify for the ballot.  Is Agran aiming for a do-or-die rematch?  Is Fox going to try to get in on the top floor rather than at ground level, on the theory that Choi is an easier opponent than Lalloway?  Democrats need to win either the two Council seats or the Mayor’s seat to take the majority — although Choi and Christine Shea could still prevent a Council majority could still prevent them from overturning Choi’s increasingly brazen and despotic rulings from the Chair.

As of now, Daigle is the only challenger to Choi.  (I hope that some cynics will finally recognize that she was apparently not a stalking horse for Larry Agran in 2012; that race has put her in a position to run this year. Doesn’t look so dumb now, does it?)  Daigle is a Republican of the “outsider” persuasion, meaning that she hasn’t been bought by developers.  As this is likely to be popular with independents, and as Democrats are divided between those who don’t want anyone to be bought by developers and those who don’t want anyone who is bought by the developers that have their hooks into Choi, Daigle could do a lot better than people realize.  The Republican strategy for this year has been to beat down Agran and Krom; a Republican who is neither allied with them nor out to get them — and who might give them a fair hearing and focus on corruption even-handedly, could catch them flat-footed.  And, like Fox, she was out decisively for the Veterans Cemetery a lot earlier and more clearly than most.  I’m told that she and Fox get along well.

City Council: Krom and Shea continue until 2016; but Agran and Lalloway are on the hot seat.  Lalloway’s de facto ticket-mate will apparently be Tea Partier Schott, with whom (although some will dispute this) he makes an odd couple.  Fox, the presumable second Democrat in the race, has kept prudent distance from the Great Park dust-ups while showing lots of leadership on the Vets cemetery.  I don’t think that Schott is likely to make it, but any of the other three could make it — and with all of the hammering done against Agran, none of them are truly safe.  Evan Chemers and Greg Smith have also pulled papers, but someone would have to work hard to convince me that they will not finish behind the other four.

#4 Huntington Beach

First: If you haven’t done so already, go read Beach Baby and Publisher Vern Nelson’s stunning description of the vicious Mobile Home Park trying to shove their residents out of their homes and onto some place where they’ll have to be cared for by their overburdened families or the public.  His discussion at the very end of HB’s political layout goes well beyond mine here.

City Attorney:  HB doesn’t elect a Mayor, but it does elect a City Attorney, so let’s get it out of the way first.  Incumbent Jennifer McGrath has completed filing.  Her sole challenger so far, Michael Gates, has not.

City Council:  Four seats are open.  Joe Shaw and Connie Boardman are the top environmentalist tag team in Orange County politics; while one always has to run scared to win, and while they will be run down by a blizzard of negative mailers from consultants for the likes of Poseidon, it’s just hard for me to envision either of them losing.  They’ve done a really good job — and with four seats open there’s plenty of room for them on the victory stand.  Among the other names, former Council members Devin Dwyer and Barbara Delgleize (champion of the evil Mobile Home Park owners) have obvious name recognition.  I’m not deeply immersed in Surf City politics anymore, but of the other 10 people who have pulled papers — Erik PetersonAlexander Polsky, Mike Posey, Mark Bixby, Billy O’Connell, Hec Valdez, Clem Dominguez, John Nosich, Brendan Kenney, and Lyn Semata — none of them jump out at me as major threats to the above four.  Vern says that Peterson is the Evil Mobile Home Park owners co-favorite with Delgleize, so keep out an eye for him, and newcomer Bixby is the third member of “Team Huntington Beach” along with Shaw and Boardman.  Only Bixby has so far qualified for the ballot.

#5 Garden Grove

I can’t find a list of candidates on the City’s website.  Seriously — no section on elections — and under the City Clerk’s page the only link regarding “elections” is to a Public Records Request form.  Really, Garden Grove?  Mayor Bruce Broadwater and Councilmember Kris Beard are up for reelection and, as I understand it, both are running.  Republican Dina Nguyen is termed out; last I heard her husband Democrat Joe Dovinh is running for her seat.  So it’s not like there’s no storyline to follow here!

(Follow-up: this has still not been fixed.  Is there any possible excuse for this?  Interested readers may want to contact City Hall and ask what’s going on.)

#6 Orange

In some ways, this is even stranger than Garden Grove.  Orange has its Candidate Handbook featured prominently on its home page — but no apparent way to find out who has filed for office thus far.  If any of you know powerful Republican Councilmembers Dennis Bilodeau or Fred Whitaker, who are up this year along with Mayor Tita Smith, perhaps you can call them and ask what they are hiding.

#7 Fullerton

Fullerton has no separate race for Mayor.  I dropped a pretty broad hint last week that no women were among the eight candidates running for the office — and that former candidate Jane Rands of the Green Party could probably waltz in and clean up.  The incumbents are Mayor Doug Chaffee and Greg Sebourn.  As of last week, Barry Levinson, Thomas Babcock, Larry Bennett, Rick Alvarez, Sean Paden, and Bill Chaffee — who I have on good authority is not Doug Chaffee — have filed.  This week there is a new name: Jane Rands.  I think that this development might winnow the field, but maybe not — Fullerton is nothing if not peculiar.

Doug Chaffee, that is — looks to be the clear favorite for one seat because he has no Democrats nearby with which to split up the vote.  (While Rands is a left-winger, on the most contentious issues of police and pensions she’s also more likely to be allied with Bruce Whitaker than with Chaffee.)  Levinson, Paden, and Sebourn may be cannibalizing each other for votes, making it easier for Alvarez — with whom Chaffee is probably most ideologically compatible — to win a seat.  Public safety unions will probably want to elect Chaffee and Alvarez or Bennett — but the success of Whitaker in 2012 suggests that the public hasn’t exactly forgotten about Fullerton’s recent history.  Frankly, I don’t know what to make of the presence of Larry Bennett — who led the anti-recall forces in 2012 — in the race, but my bet is that Rands will appreciate it.

I’m not sure whether this race could get any more interesting than it already is, if this entire field qualifies.

#8 Costa Mesa

No seperate race for Mayor.  The Council minority needs to pick off both seats to change the direction of the City.  Jim Righeimer is running for reelection; if he’s elected, the “deformers” keep their majority over the reformers.  Former Councilwoman Katrina Foley, Jay Humphrey, and Harold Weitzberg seem to be favorites of reformers — the problem being, obviously, that there are three of them competing for two seats. Tony Capitelli and Lee Ramos round out the field.  Capitelli has some relatively minor conservative endorsements, though none from the Righeimer claque.  Ramos says that he’s conservative, but lists no endorsements.

Community College Boards

North Orange County Community College Board: No change.  Incumbent Democrats Barbara Dunsheath (seat 1), Donna Miller (seat 3), and Jeffrey Brown (seat 6) all remain unopposed.

Coastline Community College Board: No change.  Incumbent Democrats Jim Moreno (seat 1) and David Grant (seat 5, not yet qualified) remain unopposed.

Rancho Santiago Community College Board:  No change.  Incumbents John Hanna (D, seat 2, not yet qualified) and Phil Yarbrough (R, seat 6, not yet qualified) remain unopposed.  In Seat 4, incumbent Democrat Larry Labrado Sr. (D) is being challenged by both Robert Douglas, a Democrat from Orange and Trung Quang Nguyen (not yet qualified), a Republican from, I believe, Garden Grove.

South Orange County Community College Board: One change.  Incumbents TJ Prendergast (NPP, seat 2, not yet qualified) and Marcia Milchiker (R, seat 5) remain unopposed.  In Seat 4, all are not yet qualified: incumbent Nancy Padberg is now being challenged by Jim Leach as well as by Quinlan Rakin.

School Boards — Unified (K-12)

Brea-Olinda UnifiedNo change.  No candidates have as yet qualified for the ballot.  The incumbents, Republicans Nicole Colon, Bill Hall, and Joe Rollino and NPP Alicia Maciel, are all running for re-election.  They currently face two challengers: Carrie Flanders and Holli Kittleson.  Who will be the first to propose providing bus service for students attending zero-period high school classes?  THAT’S A HINT, FOLKS!

Capistrano Unified: No change.  No one has yet qualified for the ballot.  Craig P. Alexander (a relatively frequent contributor to the infrequently updated OC Political blog) and Martha McNicholas have filed to replace termed-out Mungercide victim Anna Bryson.  Incumbent Ellen Addonizio (R) is currently unchallenged in Seat 6.  Seat 7, only Julie Collier has filed for the seat currently held by Lynn Hatton-Hodson (D).  This has been a contentious board in recent years, with a coalition of Democrats and John Alpay holding sway, so a shift of a single vote could turn it.

Garden Grove Unified: No change; one unfilled seat!  Lan Quoc Nguyen and Bob Harden are the Republican incumbents; so far Harden is the only candidate to have filed for the race, and has not qualified.

Irvine Unified:  No change.  Sharon Wallin (D) and Ira Glasky (R) are running for reelection; Bob Vu is challenging them.  So far, only Vu has qualified.

Laguna Beach Unified: No change; one unfilled seat!  Three seats open; Katherine “Ketta” Brown, the only Republican among the three incumbents, is the only one currently filed for reelection.   Dee Namba Perry is thus far the only challenger, and only she has qualified.

Los Alamitos Unified: Big change! Incumbent Republicans Jeffrey Barke and Diana Hill are now opposed by Cathy Larson and Greg Shellenbergar.  No one has as yet qualified.

Newport-Mesa Unified: One change.  No one has as yet qualified.  Incumbent Katrina Foley, the current Board’s only Democrat, is giving up Seat 2 in her bid to return to Costa Mesa City Council; only Charlene Metoyer has filed to replace her.  This one will go to August 13.  In Seat 4, Karen Yelsey (R) faces a challenge from Abraham Cassis.  In Seat 5, Judy Franco (R) faces a challenge from Sandra Asper.  The change: Walt Davenport (R) has now filed for reelection to Seat 7.  Appointed incumbent Vicki Snell (R) faces a challenge for the remaining two years of Seat 1′s term from Steve Smith.

Orange Unified: One change.  Incumbent Democrats Diane Singer in Seat 1 and Kathy Moffat in Seat 4 are running, with Brian Harrington joining Zachary Collins in challenging Moffat.  None of them have as yet qualified.  Incumbent Republicans Tim Surridge in Seat 5 and Rick Ledesma in Seat 7 are running, which Ledesma facing Steve Rocco.  All candidates in Seats 5 and 7 have qualified.

Placentia-Yorba Linda Unified: One change.  Incumbent Democrats Carrie Buck and Karin Freeman, who have both qualified, are now being challenged by Steven Ehrich as well as by OC Political blogger Brenda McCune, who have not.

Saddleback Valley Unified: No change.  Incumbent Republicans Dolores Winchell and Dennis Walsh face a challenge from C.J. Brower.  None have qualified.

Santa Ana Unified: No change.  Incumbent Democrat John Palacio is running for reelection; the other incumbent, Audrey Yamagata-Noji, has not filed.  (So it may go to Aug. 13.)  Three challengers so far: Cecilia Aguinaga, Shuntelle Andrews, and Everlena Oliver.  Valerie Amezcua is expected to join them, but hasn’t so far.  Only Oliver has as yet qualified.

Tustin Unified: On this uniformly Republican board, Lynn Davis and Jonathan Abelove are being challenged by Michael Jones, Elias Teferi, and David Yang.  Only Teferi and Davis have qualified.

School Boards — High School

Anaheim Union HSD:  No change.  Incumbents Al Jabbar (D, Seat 1) and Anna Piercy (R, Seat 5) are currently unopposed.  (Really — no one wants to challenge Piercy?)  Seat 2, though, is a doozy.  Because the AUHSD has just now moved from an at-large to a district system, one current school Board Member, Annemarie Randle-Trejo, is an incumbent in the sense that she has represented District 2 (and the rest of the Districts) on the Board, but she is not an incumbent of District 2.  She used to live in Cypress, on the far west side of the AUHSD, ¾ of a mile north of Piercy and 1½ miles southeast of Board Chair Brian O’Neil.  So she has moved to District 2, the southeastern part of the Anaheim Flatlands, to run from there.  Her opponents include former Trustee Hoagy Holguin, Jose “Joe” Moreno (not to confused with Dr. Jose Moreno of the Anaheim Elementary School District and Los Amigos, although he’ll probably benefit from any confusion), and Eleazar Elizondo, who ran against Art Pedroza for the County School Board in 2012 and (my guess is) will spend a lot of his time reminding voters that Pedroza’s friend Joe Moreno is not the local civil rights leader Dr. Jose F. Moreno.  Only Piercy has qualified as yet.

Fullerton Joint Union HSD: One change.  This district continues to use at-large representation.  Its three incumbents are Marilyn BuchiRobert Hathaway, and Robert A Singer.  The trio currently faces two challengers:  Joanne Fawley has been joined by Aaruni Thakur.  (Disclaimer: Fawley uses the firm where my daughter works as her Campaign Treasurer.  That fact will not affect anything I write about the race; from what I know of her, I’d expect to support her anyway, along with Thakur.)  All incumbents, but no challengers, have qualified.

Huntington Beach Union HSD: No change.  Democrats Bonnie Castrey and Kathleen Iverson are incumbents; Republican Duane Dishno is an appointed incumbent.  All are seeking reelection, and are being challenged by Kathy Ryder and Janis Mantini.  Only Ryder and Iverson have qualified as yet.

School Boards — Elementary School

Anaheim City SD:  One change and one readjustment.  The incumbents are Dr. Jose Moreno, who this week became a Democrat; Democrat Jeffrey Cole, the only person to have qualified for the ballot so far; and Republican Sandy Blumberg.  Dr. Moreno is still deciding between the School Board and the City Council races, but my sense is that he’s leaning for this one.  If not, then it’s open until Aig. 13.We won’t know until he files the papers he’s pulled. (Moreno is friendly with James Vanderbilt, who is up for reelection to the School Board in 2016, and both prefer Tait’s approach to governing to that of Kris Murray.)  Challengers now include D.R. Heywood, a Democrat and Jordan Brandman ally, for whom the firm where my daughter works also provides services.  (Whatever I write about this race will be despite that last clause.)  New to the race this past week is challenger Ryan Ruelas.

Buena Park SD Significant changes.  The incumbents up this year are Helen Lee, an NPP, and Republicans Samuel Van Hamblen and Brian Chambers.  All have now filed for this year’s election, and are currently unchallenged, but none have qualified.

Centralia SD: No change.  This district is shaping up as one of the more interesting in the county.  Three Republicans, Lisa  JordanKevin Segueira (an appointee), and Irv Trinkle, have expiring terms; Jordan and Segueira have already filed.  They have interesting company.  Henry Chareon, the La Palma City Councilmember who is continually mentioned as a candidate for higher office, has filed — and is the only one to have qualified for the ballot.  Art David Montez, who touts his 40 years of experience in education, is running for both this seat and Buena Park Library Board.  Last and youngest: Connor Traut, the Jordan Brandman protégé and larval form (so maybe there’s still hope) of Simon the Likeable (Fans of Get Smart may remember this unforgettable Jack Gilford role.)  If Trinkle doesn’t file, this goes into overtime.

Cypress SD: No change; one unfilled seat.  The incumbents up for election this year include Democrat Steve Blount and Republicans David Geise and Valeri Peters Wagner; Blount and Wagner have filed to run — as has no one else.  Only Wegner has qualified.

Fountain Valley SD:  One change.  The incumbents are Jimmy Templin (an NPP) and Republicans Judy Edwards and Sandra Crandall; of these, only Crandall has so far filed to run.  Four non-incumbents have as well: Jim Cunneen, Samuel Lew, Lisa Schultz, and now also Gary Stine.  Crandall, Cunneen, and Schultz have qualified.

Fullerton SD: No change.  The Republican incumbents are: Beverly BerrymanJanice Meyer, and Chris Thompson.  Their sole current challenger is Daniel Halkyard.  (Seriously — no other Democrats or other insurgents are running against Chris Thompson?  HELLO, FFFFsters?)  Only Meyer has qualified.

Huntington Beach City SD: No change, unfilled seat.  The incumbents are NPP appointee Shari Kowalke and Democrats Celia Jaffe and Rosemary Saylor.  Of these, only Saylor has filed thus far.  So has Paul Morrow.  Both have qualified.

La Habra City SD:  New listingtwo seats remain unfilled.  The incumbents are Sharon Brown (D), Linda Navarro Edwards (NPP), and Sandi Baltes (R).  None, so far, are running for reelection, making this one especially likely to go into overtime and be decided on August 13.  Ida MacMurry, a retired teacher and well-respected Democratic activist, has entered the race, but not yet qualified.  

Lowell Joint SD: No changeunfilled seat.  The incumbents are William Hinz, Darin W Barber, and Anastasia Shackelford.  So far, Barber and Shackleford have filed and qualified — and no one else.

Magnolia SD: Significant changes.  The incumbents, Republicans Clifford E Breeden Jr and Esther H Wallace have filed and qualified; Democrat Barbara Quintana has filed.  So has challenger Gary Shields.

Ocean View SD: Big changes.  Last week, only American Independent incumbent John Ortiz had filed.  Now the Republican incumbents, Tracy Pellman and John Briscoe, have joined him — as have challengers Joseph Gaglione and Jack C. Souders.  No one has qualified.

Savanna SD: No change.  Republican incumbents Edward Erdtsieck, Linda Weinstock, and John Shook remain unchallenged.  Weinstock and Shook have qualified.

Westminster SD: No change, two seats unfilled.  The incumbents are Democrats Penny Loomer and Mary Mangold and Republican David Bridgewaters.  For now, Loomer is the only candidate who has filed, though she has not qualified.

Special Districts — Water Boards

I’m repeating much of the basic information I presented last week about Water Boards and other Special Districts because, unlike School Boards, people generally don’t seem to understand them.  (And it’s no wonder: many of them are relics of the past, and even then they weren’t set up to be easily understood.)

Independent and Municipal

Special Districts do lots of things, especially in OC’s unincorporated areas, but the brunt of their activity involves water politics — dirty, dirty, water politics, with a lineage straight from John Huston in Chinatown.  So let’s go out of the order that the Registrar of Voters suggests and start with those fluid behemoths.  Among other things, they will play a major role in deciding the future of the Poseidon desalination plant — and they have been of course been well-stocked with lavishly rewarded supporters of the project.

The two big ones get their own categories on the ROV page.  The Orange County Water District is an “Independent Water Board” and the Municipal Water District is a “Municipal Water Board.”  (If you wonder whether they (and other boards) are largely redundant, in his last article printed in OJB, ported over from Surf City Voice, the late lamented puckish politico Gus Ayer, aka Mayor Quimbyargued that the MWD surely is.  Go, shoo — read, learn, and pay your respects to the Old Master.)  So let’s start with those two.  First, some maps!

Orange County Water District: Here’s the area served by the OCWD, including its overlap with other smaller districts.

OCWD Service Map
But how can they be truly civilized if they don’t serve La Habra and Brea? (And, uh, some other places.)

And here’s the breakdown of their governing districts.  Note that Anaheim, Fullerton, and Santa Ana have their own appointed seats, currently held by Harry Sidhu, Jan Flory, and Vincent Sarmiento.

OCWD - Water District Seats by the Numbers
Yes, Division 3 is non-contiguous because of Fullerton’s separate appointed seat, and Division 2 is non-contiguous because mumble-mumble.

OCWD has three seats open, for Divisions 1, 5, and 7.

Division 1, composed of portions of Garden Grove, Stanton, and Westminster — this is a heavily gerrymandered board — is currently held by Katherine Barr, a Democrat who has been on the board for over 35 years and is now retiring.  So far, termed out Garden Grove Councilwoman Dina Nguyen is the only one who has filed, though she has not qualified.  What does she think about Poseidon?  Don’t know, let’s ask her — well before the filing deadline, which without Barr will be August 13!  Just in case, does anyone else who might be interested live around here?

Division 5, which covers parts of Irvine and Newport Beach, has been represented by Stephen Sheldon — last seen casting a safe “yes” vote in favor of transparency (meaning recording of meetings) given that it was going to fail with him or without him.  He’s a big supporter of Poseidon.

Here’s what I had to say last week: Sheldon is being challenged by Leslie Daigle, who was knocked out of the 74th Assembly District primary by the combination of victor Allan MansoorRobert Rush, a challenger driven by anger towards her over disagreements in Newport Beach; and wealthy funder Charles Munger, who was testing the “destroying preferred OC Assembly candidate through obnoxious independent expenditures” tactic that he perfected this year with Anna Bryson in the 73rd.  Sheldon will be tough, but if Daigle has serious reservations about Poseidon she’d be a clear choice — and probably pick up lots of support from Democrats and Independents as well as Newport Beach Republicans.

Here’s what I have to add this week: Democrat Ron Varasteh, who ran against Rep. Dana Rohrabacher in 2012, has pulled papers for this seat, which would complicate the above analysis.  However, he has also taken out papers for the partially overlapping Municipal Water Board seat, discussed below — and as a non-incumbent facing major opposition in either race it’s extremely doubtful that he’d try both.  Until he decides which race better suits him, it’s hard to make a call here.  None of the three have qualified.

Division 7 — Incumbent Shawn Dewayne — a huge supporter of Poseidon — filed for reelection in this district this past week.  So far, no one has filed to challenge him, although our “Tyler in Irvine” has said that he has someone in mind.  And as Vern has noted, John Moorlach lives in this district.  (Have a restful sleep this week, Mr. Dewane!)

Municipal Water District of Orange County: Here’s a map of the service area for the MWDOC, which will also fill in the locations of many of the smaller water districts discussed herein:

MWDOC map
Those holes that aren’t Cleveland National Forest and such are the cities of Fullerton, Anaheim, and Santa Ana.

As you can see, if you can see, the MWDOC covers the entire county except for the cities of Anaheim, Fullerton, and Santa Ana (and the Cleveland National Forest and maybe other East OC hiking areas.  East OC is not my specialty.)  It has three seats up this year: Divisions 1, 2, and 5.

Division 1:  No change.  This district in North OC (again, minus Fullerton)  is served by lobbyist and Poseidon peddler Brett Barbre, another of our cover boys, last seen on these pages trying to shoehorn Los Alamitos’s Troy Edgar into the County Clerk’s race against Hugh Nguyen.  (Speculation holds that this was related to his long bond with former County Clerk Tom Daly.)  He’s been on these pages before that, too, with many of those links lead back to FFFF diatribes, ones very much worth reading.  Barbre is also one of OC’s four appointees to the 37-member Metropolitan Water District, which serves 23 million residents in Southern California – JUST where one wants to put a lobbyist!  He is currently running unopposed, though he has not yet qualified.  That is seriously irritating.  Do you hear me, North Orange Countians?  SERIOUSLY IRRITATING.

Division 2: This district in Central OC (eastern Garden Grove, most of Orange, Villa Park, and north and unincorporated Tustin) is served by Larry Dick.  He’s also a member of the big MWD, and is on the Board of the OC Taxpayers Association, so draw your own conclusions.  He too is currently running unopposed, but has not qualified.  My guess is that he favors Poseidon.  Anyone find that interesting?

Division 5: This district in mid-coastal OC (Newport Beach and portions of Irvine, Lake Forest and Laguna Woods) has been served by Wayne Clark, who is departing from the Board.  Two Republicans are currently competing to replace him.  One is Jose Vergara of the tiny El Toro Water District; the other is … can it be? … yes it is! … Dave Ellis.  Dave Ellis, of the attempt to sell the OC Fairgrounds to a group of people including Dave Ellis.  Dave Ellis, whose photo has for some reason never before now, to my knowledge, been recolored bullfrog green.  Vergara’s main advantage here is that he is not Dave Ellis, but it would not be surprising if this district could cough up a real environmentalist to compete with these two gentlemen.  Plurality rules, after all!  As noted above, Ron Varasteh has pulled papers for this seat as well as the OCWD, though it’s not yet clear which race he’ll choose.  No one has as yet qualified, but they’ll have until August 13 to do it.

California Water Districts

OC has four of these: the El Toro, Irvine Ranch, Moulton Niguel, and Santa Margarita Water Districts.  As you can see from the map, these cover most of the land in South OC that wasn’t incorporated before 1970.

El Toro WD is electing two at-large directors.  Democrat William Kahn has filed; Republican Jerard Werner, has not.  One non-incumbent, water consultant Fred Adjarian, has filed and qualified.

Irvine Ranch WD is electing three at-large directors.  Each of  the three incumbents, Democrat Steven LaMar and Republicans Peer Swan and Douglas Reinhart, is running, as are challengers John Jaeger and Thomas Cagley.  No one has as yet qualified.

Moulton Niguel WD elects by districts (called Divisions.)  Seats 2, 3, and 4 are up.  Incumbents Scott Colton and Donald Froelich on this uniformly Republican 7-member Board are currently unopposed in Seat 2 and 3.  In Seat 4, incumbent Laurence Lizotte is being challenged by both Cal Olson and Julie Dean Larsen.  I suspect that there might be a story here, and it doesn’t just involve spelling Scandinavian surnames.  All incumbents have qualified for the ballot; neither challenger has done so.

Santa Margarita WD elects two at-large Directors.  Incumbents Saundra Frances Jacobs and Justin McCusker (an appointee) have filed, as has Stanislaw Dziecielski.

County Water Districts

Then we have six County water districts: the East Orange County, Mesa Consolidated, South Coast, Trabuco Canyon, and Yorba Linda Water Districts, and the Rossmoor/Los Alamitos Area Sewer District.

East OC WD elects three at-large directors.  Incumbents Richard Bell and appointee Sy Everett have filed; incumbent John Dulebohn has not.  Douglas Chapman is running here as well.  No one has qualified as yet.

Mesa Consolidated WD has two seats open this year.  In Division 4, incumbent James Atkinson is being challenged by Ron Amburgey.  Shawn Dewane currently represents Division 5, and he filed this last week.  None of these candidates have qualified.

South Coast WD has two open seats.  Incumbent Bob Moore has filed; Richard Runge has not.  Four others have filed: Bill Green, Dennis Erdman, Norman Lee Denton and Richard Gardner.  None have qualified.

Trabuco Canyon WD has three open seats — and incumbents Michael SafranskiEd Mandich, and Glenn Acosta have all filed.  No one else has.  None have as yet qualified.

Yorba Linda WD has three open seats.  The incumbents, Gary MeltonPhil Hawkins, and Robert Kiley, are all running and are currently unchallenged.  Only Kiley has qualified.

Rossmoor/Los Alamitos Area Sewer District incumbents Joel M Rattner and Linda Habermehl have both filed; they are currently unchallenged.  Neither has qualified.

Special Districts — Water-Related but Not Actual Water Boards

I’m just not going to explain how these creatures work.  Run for one, don’t run — do what you want.

Irrigation District

Serrano Water District elects by Division, this year it’s seats 1 and 4.  In Seat 1, incumbent Richard Freschi is being challenged by Brad Reese; neither has qualified.  In Seat 4, incumbent Frank Bryant is currently running unopposed and has qualified.  Good luck irrigating Villa Park, guys!

Storm Water Protection District

Surfside Colony Storm Water Protection District is on the board!  The incumbents are Gayle Mueller WinnenJon Regnier, and John Kriss.  Only Kriss and Winnen are running for reelection, joined by Lawrence Zero.  None have qualified.

Sanitary Districts

OC has three Sanitary Districts, not counting Rossmoor’s, which apparently is a Water District.  They are:

Costa Mesa Sanitary DistrictThe incumbents, all of whom are running, are Bob Ooten, Mike Scheafer, and Arlene Schafer, who is an appointee.  They have one challenger, Brian Peotter.  No one has qualified yet.

Midway City Sanitary DistrictThe three incumbents are Margie L Rice, Frank Cobo, and Tyler Diep.  All have now filed, but not qualified, and are currently unchallenged.

Sunset Beach Sanitary District: Also located since last week.  The incumbents, Gregory Griffin and appointee Bernard Hartmann, have both filed, not qualified, and are unchallenged.

Special Districts — Home Rule-ish

Orange County has six Community Services districts in unincorporated areas, which provide something like limited home rule.  One of them is deceptively labeled; let’s see if you can find it!

Capistrano Bay Community Services District: Two unfilled seats.  The incumbents up this year are supposed to be Kirk Bell, David Gutierrez, and Robert Bancroft.  No one seems to be running.  At all.  Are you part of a religious cult?  A Trotskyist cell?  So far as I can see, this could be your chance to take over a local government!

Emerald Bay Service District:  One unfilled seat. The incumbents are John McDermott, Keri Ueberroth, and appointee Susan Thomas.  Ueberroth and Thomas have filed, though not qualified; no challengers have filed.

Rossmoor Community Services District: Incumbent Bill Kahlert has filed; incumbent Alfred Coletta hasn’t.  Three challengers have filed: Rich Butterfield and Mark Nitikman, and David Burgess.

Silverado-Modjeska Recreation and Park District: One full and one short term unfilled seat.  The incumbents for the three full-term seats are Ron ShepstonThomas Smisek, and Gregory Bates, none of whom have filed.  Kevin Topp and Joanne Hubble have, so one full-term seat is going begging.  No one appears to have filed for an allegedly open short term seat.

Surfside Colony Community Services District:  Four seats; four candidates.  Incumbents Donald Karich and John Kriss have filed; incumbents Dan Nowak and Nora Straight have not.  Challengers Paul Mesner and Laren Johnson have also filed.  No one has yet qualified.

Three Arch Bay Community Services District: One unfilled seat.  Incumbent Rhoads Martin is running; appointed incumbent Tim Hamchuk is not.  No challengers yet.

Special Districts — Library

Finally, OC has two independent Library Districts, named after Buena Park and Placentia.  They control, respectively, the weather and the stock market.

Buena Park Library District: Its incumbents are Mary Furhman and Al Salehi, the latter of whom is another candidate (against Mimi Walters, as I recall) who went nowhere in June.  Both are running for reelection, being challenged by Art David Montez and Baron Knight.  Only Salehi has qualified.

Placentia Library District: The two incumbents are Al Shkoler and Jo-Anne Martin, an appointee, both of whom are running and currently unchallenged.  Neither has qualified.

That’s all, folks!


About Greg Diamond

Prolix worker's rights and government accountability attorney and General Counsel of CATER. His anti-corruption work in Anaheim infuriated the Building Trades and Teamsters in spring 2014, leading them to work with the Democratic Party of Orange County Chair and other co-conspirators (who had long detested the internal oversight his presence provided) to remove him from the position of DPOC North Vice Chair of in violation of party rules and any semblance of due process. He also runs for office sometimes. Unless otherwise specifically stated, none of his writings prior to that lawless putsch ever spoke for the Democratic Party at the local, county, state, national, or galactic level. He tries to either suppress or openly acknowledge his partisan, issue, ideological, and "good government" biases in most of his writing here. If you have a question about any particular writing, just ask him about it and (unless you are an pseudonymous troll) he will probably answer you at painful length. He lives in Beautiful Bountiful Brea, but while he may brag about it he generally doesn't blog about it. A family member works as a campaign treasurer for candidates including Wendy Gabriella in AD-73; he doesn't directly profit from that relatively small compensation and it doesn't affect his coverage. He does advise some campaigns informally and (except where noted) without compensation.