Archive for the ‘Politics & Elections’ Category

Interest in possible recount for close Antioch elections faces high cost, but can be shared by multiple candidates

Wednesday, November 25th, 2020

Posada increases her lead in Treasurer’s race to 20 votes

By Allen Payton

Discussions about a possible recount for the close races in the Antioch elections, including for City Treasurer, City Clerk and District 1 City Council hit somewhat of a brick wall, due to the cost.

Current City Treasurer Jim Davis, who was trailing by just 16 votes behind challenger Lauren Posada, told the Herald, last week that a recount requires a $25,000 deposit.

Asked to confirm that amount, how recounts work and if multiple candidates asked for a recount or if there was one for all races in Antioch could they share the costs, Contra Costa County Assistant Registrar of Voters Scott Konopasek said, “The $25,000 is what I’ve been putting out there. The deposit is a one-time cost and if multiple people ask for a recount, they can share that cost.”

“For Antioch, we would have to find 45,000 cards out of 2.7 million cards, spread out over 3,500 boxes,” he explained. “So, we can do it. We just don’t know how long it will take. That’s why we have to charge so much.”

“The beauty of doing a citywide recount is they don’t have to pick this precinct or that precinct. We will count all the precincts since we’ll have all the cards,” Konopasek further explained.

“Anything we don’t consume in labor costs will be refunded back,” he added.

Konopasek also confirmed that “if there is a change in who wins, the person who requested it gets a full refund.”

However, the only race that has a possibility of a change in winner is the treasurer’s race and $25,000 is more than both candidates spent on their campaigns, combined.

According to the Semi-Official Elections Update #5 posted today at 2:48 p.m., it shows Posada has increased her lead to 20 votes, with 21,136 to Davis’ 21,116 votes.

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Challenger Lauren Posada overtakes Jim Davis by 16 votes in Antioch Treasurer’s race

Friday, November 20th, 2020

Semi-Official Results Update #4 shows Lauren Posada pulling ahead by 16 votes in the race for Antioch City Treasurer on Friday, Nov. 20, 2020.

Householder expands her lead over Arne Simonsen in the City Clerk’s race; Walker also expands her lead over Motts in District 1 Council race

By Allen Payton

With 1,200 ballots left to count countywide, as of today’s Semi-Official Results Update #4 from the Contra Costa Elections Division, newcomer and challenger Lauren Posada has pulled ahead of appointed incumbent Jim Davis by just 16 votes in the race for Antioch City Treasurer. Posada now has 21,074 votes and he has 21,058.

In the City Clerk’s race Antioch School Board Trustee Ellie Householder has increased her lead over incumbent Arne Simonsen to 113 votes. Householder has 16,667 votes to his 16,554.

A total of 42,472 votes were cast in the Clerk’s race, 42,132 in the Treasurer’s race and 44,400 in the race for Mayor of Antioch, which was more than the total of 42,989 votes that were cast in all four of the council races

Efforts to reach Lauren Posada for comment was unsuccessful prior to publication.

An attempt to reach Simonsen asking if he was ready to offer Householder congratulations or considering requesting a recount was also unsuccessful. However, in a post on his Facebook page Friday afternoon, Simonsen appears to have conceded the election writing, “Well, it appears that the voters in Antioch are going to let me retire and spend more time in Scotland.”

When asked if was considering requesting a recount, Davis responded, “A recount would be too expensive.” Asked how much he said, “$25,000 deposit to start. The county eats the fee (no charge to the candidate) if it results in a change of outcome. California is one of the few states that don’t provide for automatic recount even if under 0.5% which is about where I’m at.”

Asked if he was going to congratulate Posada, now or wait until the election is certified, Davis responded “once certified.”

Davis said he was “disappointed that she slandered me. I saw where she alluded that I was not transparent and not trustworthy. Do you realize she stands to collect two retirement contributions now, and receive compensation for half of her medical benefit as a cash payment monthly? Sounds like double dipping to me.”

Asked why he didn’t bring that out during the campaign, he didn’t respond. But Davis continued his comments about his opponent with, “She said repeatedly in her FB posts. ‘I’m your transparent and trustworthy City Treasure Candidate.’”

“Plus, there is still the conflict of interest. Maybe not legal – but certainly the perception and potential conflict of interest,” Davis shared. “Back in the day that was not good for any politician. But what used to be bad is now good, and what used to be good is now bad in politics. The world is changing…at least in Antioch.”

City Council District 1

In the only other close race in Antioch, newcomer Tamisha Walker solidified her winning lead over incumbent Mayor Pro Tem Joy Motts to 206 votes in the District 1 City Council race. Walker has 2,668 votes to Motts’ 2,462. Former Antioch Mayor Pro Tem Manny Soliz is in a close third place with 2,400 votes exactly making it the closest race out of the four for city council.

On her campaign Facebook page on Friday, Nov. 13 Walker wrote, “WE DID IT! Thank you, Antioch District 1! This victory is for us!

I am so excited and honored to represent my neighborhood of District 1 in bringing our issues to city council and begin working at improving the quality of life in Antioch for all residents.

This election is only the beginning!

This campaign and movement is a grassroots community effort and Antioch we have organizing to do together.

Like the Antioch Together Car Caravan we will drive hate out of Antioch together. Together we will inspire compassion and courage across all of Antioch for each other and for our future generations to benefit from.

We are still going to need to show up for each other beyond the polls! The change we want is the change we work for. We need all our communities in the other districts to come together and make sure that citywide policies are equitable, fair and just.

To my neighbors in District 1, Thank you to every voter for showing up at the polls whether you voted for Joy, Manuel, or me, your vote means a lot to our immediate future and wellbeing of Antioch!

I look forward to showing up for you the way you showed up on Election Day!

Thank You Antioch!

We will be hosting a Virtual Live Celebration soon! Stay Tuned!

#Readytowin, #elections2020, #antioch, #leadership, # grassroots, #fundwomen

The seats for both Walker and Councilwoman Monica Wilson, who was re-elected in District 4, will be up for election, again in 2022.

An attempt to reach Motts asking if she will now offer congratulations to Walker, as she hasn’t yet posted one on either of her Facebook pages, or if she’s considering requesting a recount, was also unsuccessful prior to publication.

The county Elections Division has 28 days to certify the election and ballots could still arrive up  until today and still be counted, as long as they were postmarked by Election Day. One more final update is expected in the next week. According to Assistant Registrar of Voters, Scott Konopasek “certification…is expected to be November 30. All results remain unofficial until certification.”

Please check back later for any updates to this report.

 

 

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Outgoing Antioch School Board trustees receive praise, offer a few digs in their parting remarks

Wednesday, November 18th, 2020

Diane Gibson-Gray and Crystal Sawyer-White received praise and offered their farewell thoughts Wednesday night, Nov. 18, 2020. Herald file photos.

Board unanimously re-appoints Tony Tiscareno to district Personnel Commission

Allen Payton

During the Antioch School Board meeting Wednesday night, Nov. 18, 2020, outgoing Board President Diane Gibson-Gray and Trustee Crystal Sawyer-White offered their good-byes and received messages of thanks for their service. Both lost their races for re-election, this year. (See related article)

Gibson-Gray is completing three terms for a total of 12 years on the board, and Sawyer-White is completing her first. The winners in the election, Antonio Hernandez and Dr. Clyde Lewis, Jr. will take their seats during the first board meeting on December 16.

“I would like to thank Trustee Sawyer-White for her four years of service and Trustee Gibson-Gray for her 12 years of service. We wish you the very best,” said Superintendent Stephanie Anello. “It’s sometimes a thankless position. I know both of you have faced some very difficult decisions during your terms. So, I commend you.”

That was followed by several public comments, almost all thanking Gibson-Gray for her work as a board member.

“I’m overwhelmed by the comments,” Gibson-Gray responded.

The board members spoke, next.

“I would like to say thank you to each of you for being on the board and all that you’ve done. I’m a better board member for you being on the board and the kids are better in Antioch,” said Trustee Gary Hack.

“I feel the same,” said Trustee Mary Rocha. “It’s hard because I haven’t been here, that long. I appreciate you, Crystal for your commitment to special education.

“To Diane, we’ve been together a long time. When we’re leaving a position, as I have, it seems something is lifted off our shoulders. Head Start, Antioch-Pittsburg Head Start wanted to thank you for all the time you’ve given…for the families in this community. We were able to expand thanks to you.

Trustee Ellie Householder then read from prepared remarks, “I want to start off by thanking President Gibson-Gray for her service of 12 years to our school district. We haven’t always seen eye to eye. But that’s the beauty of our democracy. I wish you the very best.”

“I am so incredibly thankful to Trustee Sawyer-White,” Householder said. “She then spoke of “her lifting up marginalized voices…and lastly her warmth and compassion.”

“Trustee Sawyer-White, I want to add that we didn’t always agree on items, but during the meetings I believe we always treated each other with dignity and respect,” Gibson-Gray shared. “I wish you all the best, sincerely.”

“I agree we didn’t always meet eye to eye but it’s always about the students,” Sawyer-White responded. “Your 12 years on the board are to be commended.”

Staff then shared their thanks to both board members.

That was followed by Sawyer-White’s final response.

“I want to thank my husband, my mom, my dad, my family members and the community members who supported me during my entire term,” she said, and then congratulated the winners in the election, Dr. Clyde Lewis and Antonio Hernandez. “I recommend you always stay true to yourself.”

“Our effort to seek transparency will not be in vain,” Sawyer-White continued. She said her term has been “rewarding, humbling and tumultuous.  Some of the incumbents continue to allow the superintendent to disregard her accountability at the detriment of best interests of AUSD students. Based on the California School Boards Association, Superintendent Anello should have had four performance reviews and currently there’s only been one from, for the last four years, each year.”

“Although I didn’t have the opportunity to serve as president, but I would publicly like to state, Trustee Householder should fill my shoes,” she added.

“After 12 years of service, I am leaving with more knowledge of how school boards work on all levels and many more friends,” Gibson-Gray said in her farewell remarks. She mentioned her last four years were difficult and “the last two being the hardest,” “having my personal character and values attacked. I can assure you I am not a racist.” She then referred to a previous comment by Householder about her age.

“To those who disagreed with my decisions, I apologize,” Gibson-Gray continued. “But every one of my decisions were in the best interest of the Antioch Unified School District. I’m proud to say I attended every graduation during my 12  years. Antonio Hernandez and Clyde Lewis will do a great job replacing myself and Trustee Sawyer-White. They are younger, enthusiastic and have ideas to be explored.”

“Like Elvis, I am leaving the building and the school board will be in good hands,” she concluded.

Gibson-Gray later responded to Sawyer-White’s comments about Anello’s performance reviews explaining, “She received a performance review each year as is required. Crystal wanted us to give her four performance reviews each year.”

Other Board Action

The board then discussed the re-appointment of former Antioch City Councilman Tony Tiscareno to the district’s Personnel Commission to a three-year term.

Rocha made the motion and Householder seconded it. She then asked to hear from Tiscareno. How are we going to move forward without having people talk?”

“We had interviews, the last time because it was an open seat,” said Assistant Superintendent Jessica Romeo.

The motion passed on a 5-0 vote.

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Antioch Elections Update #2: Householder now leads Simonsen for Clerk – by 30 votes

Tuesday, November 10th, 2020

Antioch City Clerk election results as of 11-10-20 show Antioch School Board Ellie Householder has taken the lead.

Walker expands lead over Motts in Council District 1;

Davis’ lead shrinks to 50 votes over Posada for Treasurer

By Allen Payton

In a surprise update on Tuesday afternoon posted on the Contra Costa Elections Division website, the race for Antioch City Clerk has flipped with Antioch School Board Trustee Ellie Householder pulling into the lead by just 30 votes, with 11,323 to incumbent Arne Simonsen’s 11,293 votes. She had previously conceded the election, last week, congratulating Simonsen on what was believed to be a victory. (Please see related article)

UPDATE: Asked if she was surprised by today’s update and if she wins will she step down from the school board, Householder responded, “I am happily surprised! And no, I won’t step down.” If Householder ends up winning, she will probably be the first elected official in Antioch history to hold two elected offices at the same time. (The Herald will have to research that).

However, not all the votes in the county have been counted, yet and another update is expected on Friday by 5:00 p.m. elections office staff told the Herald. Antioch Councilman and Mayor-elect Lamar Thorpe shared the figure of 10,000 votes left to be counted.

When reached for comment to confirm that figure Assistant Registrar of Voters, Scott Konopasek said, “we expect about 10,000 votes are left to be counted countywide for the whole election, plus about 5,000 provisionals.”

“The 10,000 are mostly ballots that are damaged that have to be duplicated,” he continued. “We’re getting ballots that were dropped off in other counties.”

Ballots can continue to arrive until November 20th and still be included in the county including military ballots.

“I’s not just military, it’s all ballots,” Konopasek said. “We aren’t going to report the provisionals until the 20th. They still have to be processed.”

“Then there are about 2,000 military ballots that were faxed to us, which have to be duplicated. But those are included in the 10,000,” he continued. “On the 20th, we will count all the provisionals and we should be 99.9% completed.”

Asked why the update today, Konopasek responded with a bit of joviality, “We’re taking tomorrow off for Veterans Day. I’m a veteran and I don’t work on Veterans Day!”

Semi-Official Results Update #2 for Antioch City Council District 1 shows Tamisha Walker expanding her lead over Joy Motts.

In the Antioch City Council District 1 race, newcomer Tamisha Walker expanded her lead to 191 votes over incumbent Joy Motts. Walker now has 2,788 votes over Motts’ 2,597. The head had previously been just 12 votes as of the first semi-official update last Friday afternoon. (See related article)

Semi-Official Results Update #2 for Antioch City Council District 1 shows Jim Davis’ lead over Lauren Posada is down to just 50 votes.

In the City Treasurer’s race, appointed incumbent Jim Davis’ lead was cut to just 50 votes over challenger Lauren Posada. It’s the second time the gap has closed, beginning with 1,075 votes difference as of Election Night, then down to 764 between the two as of last Friday’s update. Davis now has 20,679 votes to Posada’s 20,629.

No other significant changes occurred in the other races for Antioch City Council with Mike Barbanica’s lead over former Councilman Tony Tiscareno’s lead dropping by just six votes to now 666 in the District 2 race, and Councilwomen Lori Ogorchock and Monica Wilson winning handily in Districts 3 and 4, respectively. While Ogorchock’s lead dropped by 115 votes to just 550 over newcomer Nichole Gardner, Wilson increased her lead by 844 votes to 3,169 over Police Crime Prevention Commission Chair Sandra White in her first campaign for public office.

In the mayor’s race, Thorpe continued to increase his lead by another 1,080 votes over incumbent Dr. Sean Wright. The lead is now 4,569 votes, now with 19,363 for Thorpe to 14,794 for Wright.

“No (Antioch) mayoral candidate has won with more than 15,000 votes,” Thorpe mentioned.

So, three of the current incumbents will return for another term, Wilson for just two years as her seat will be up for election in 2022, as will the District 1 seat.

In the Antioch School Board races there were no changes, as Antonio Hernandez expanded his lead in Area 1 over incumbent Trustee and Board President Diane Gibson-Gray, and Clyde Lewis expanded his lead over incumbent Trustee Crystal Sawyer-White.

Please check back later for any updates to this report.

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Elections Update: Walker winning District 1 Antioch council race by just 12 votes over Motts

Friday, November 6th, 2020

Tamisha Walker (left) now leads Councilwoman Joy Motts (right) by 12 votes according to the Semi-Official Results Update #1 from the Contra Costa Elections Division as of Friday afternoon, Nov. 6, 2020. From Walker’s campaign Facebook page, CoCoVote.us and Herald file photo of Motts.

Clerk, Treasurer races tighten; 70,000 ballots left to count in the county; next update Friday the 13th

By Allen Payton

In the Friday afternoon Semi-Official Results – Update #1 from the Contra Costa Elections Division, newcomer and challenger Tamisha Walker has overtaken first-term Councilwoman Joy Motts in the District 1 race for Antioch City Council. The latest count shows Walker with 2,247 votes to 2,235 for Motts. Former Antioch Mayor Pro Tem and current Planning Commissioner Manny Soliz, Jr. is in a close third place with 1,946 votes.

The previous update on Tuesday night at 11:44 p.m. had Motts in the lead by 50 votes with 1,563 votes to Walker’s 1,513.

In the City Clerk’s and Treasurer’s races the gaps between the incumbents and their challengers narrowed. Incumbent City Clerk Arne Simonsen saw his lead decrease from 526 votes to 398 on Friday, over Antioch School Board Trustee Ellie Householder. Dwayne Eubanks is still in a distant third at 6,291 votes behind Householder.

Householder congratulated Simonsen in a Facebook post on Wednesday afternoon in effect, conceding the race. However, in light of the latest results she was asked Friday evening if she is now thinking of reconsidering and hoping for a victory but. Householder responded, “Because of the way the numbers were trending on Tuesday, I am not expecting a win. While the new numbers look promising, with the number of remaining outstanding votes, I don’t see a path to victory. I will say, I am delighted at the overall voter turnout!”

Appointed incumbent City Treasurer Jim Davis saw his lead decrease from 1,075 votes on Tuesday night to 764 votes over newcomer and challenger Lauren Posada.

In the race for Mayor of Antioch, Councilman Lamar Thorpe increased his lead over incumbent Mayor Sean Wright by 3,489 votes expanding his lead by 1,241 votes since Tuesday night. Thorpe now has 16,169 votes to Wright’s 12,680. Julio Jesse Mendez, Gabriel Makinano and Rakesh Kumar Christian trail in distant third, fourth and fifth places with 3,484 votes, 2,941 votes and 1,220 votes, respectively. Thorpe currently has five more votes than Wright and Mendez combined.

In the District 2 Council race, Mike Barbanica’s lead over former Councilman Tony Tiscareno increased by 111 votes since Election Night, now with 4,528 to 3,856 votes.

In District 3, incumbent Councilwoman Lori Ogorchock increased her lead over newcomer and homeless advocate Nichole Gardner by 75 votes, with 3,842 to 3,177 votes. Parks & Recreation Commission Chair Marie Arce trails in third place by 1,069 votes with 2,108 followed by Administrative Appeals Board Member Antwon Webster with 1,700 votes.

In the District 4 race, two-term incumbent Councilwoman Monica Wilson still has almost double the votes her main challenger and Police Crime Prevention Commission Chair Sandra White has, at 5,408 votes to 2,723 expanding her lead by 698 votes since Tuesday night. Newcomer and zero-dollar campaign candidate Alex John Astorga, is in third place with 1,672 votes.

In the Antioch School Board races in Area 1, newcomer Antonio Hernandez expanded his lead over incumbent Board President Diane Gibson-Gray by 192 votes to 432, with a total of 2,279 to her 1,847 votes. Alexis Medina who dropped out of the race and gave her support to Hernandez is in third place with 1,100 votes trailed by the third newcomer and challenger George Young who is in fourth place with 818 votes.

Finally, in the Area 3 school board race, Dr. Clyde Lewis, Jr. also expanded his lead by 353 votes now leading incumbent Trustee Crystal-Sawyer White by 1,128 votes in his second try for the position. He now has 3,569 votes to her 2,441. In third place is Kenny Turnage with 1,621 votes.

Asked if she was ready to concede and congratulate Lewis now that his lead has increased, Sawyer-White did not respond before publication time.

Please check back later to her and Householder’s responses and any other updates to this report.

According to county Elections office staff there are about 70,000 ballots left to count in the county, including 65,000 vote-by-mail ballots and 5,000 provisionals. The next results update won’t occur until next Friday, November 13 at 5:00 p.m. You read that correctly – Friday the 13th!

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Glover defeats Kramer handily for Supervisor, incumbents losing in college district races, Board of Education Area 3 race

Thursday, November 5th, 2020

Supervisor Federal Glover won re-election to a sixth term in District 5. Unofficial results as of Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2020 at 11:44 pm. Screenshot from CoCoVote.us.

Sandoval beating Enholm in college board Ward 5 seat; incumbent Gordon trailing former community college president Walters in Ward 2 seat;

Avila Farias leading incumbent in county Board of Education Area 3 race; incumbent Alleynne won’t claim victory yet in close race for Area 1

By Daniel Borsuk

Five-term Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors member Federal Glover won a sixth term of office on Tuesday, trouncing Contra Costa County Assessor Gus Kramer by almost two-to-one with 34,649 votes to 17,861 votes for Kramer, according to the latest update from the Contra Costa Elections Division.

Glover told the Herald: “I want to thank the people for this opportunity to serve. I have to recognize the hard work that the people on the ground put into my campaign.  I want to thank the people for their support for me over the years.”

Glover said he will work to provide the resources to “keep people safe from COVID-19.”

Over the upcoming four years Glover, a retired Dow Chemical worker who had served five years on the Pittsburg city council before starting his Board of Supervisors career, said he envisions the rollout of the Northern Waterfront Plan that will help ignite economic development along the county’s waterfront from Pinole to Oakley.

The supervisor said the recent announcement that Amazon will operate a 150,000 square foot operation at the Contra Costa Logistics Center in Oakley is a prime example of what the waterfront plan aims to create.  The Amazon Fulfillment Center will create more than 2,000 jobs.

Kramer, who is currently involved in a Superior Court case for “willful or corrupt misconduct for making unwelcome sexual comments to people in his office” told the Contra Costa Herald about his election defeat. “I wish Federal well.  I thought that the citizens of Contra Costa County deserved a choice and that I made that choice for them.”

The runoff election pitting Glover and Kramer was called when neither candidate mustered more than 50 percent of the vote in the March election when a third candidate, Martinez businessman and Planning Commissioner Sean Trambley also ran splitting the vote.

Unofficial election results for Community College Board Wards 2 and 5 as of Tues., Nov. 3, 2020 at 11:44 pm. From CoCoVote.us.

Sandoval Beating Enholm for Community College Board Seat Ward 5

In another election race, Fernando Sandoval in his second attempt is defeating two-term Contra Costa Community College District Board Ward 5 Commissioner Greg Enholm drawing 26,836 of the votes to 22,279 votes for Enholm.  Ward 5 includes Pittsburg, Oakley, and portions of Antioch, Brentwood, Byron, and Discovery Bay.

Sandoval, who campaigned for educational excellence and fiscal accountability, defeated the retired college professor Enholm. Sandoval said in a statement, “I’d like to acknowledge Greg Enholm for his service to the District.  I am grateful to all the voters and my supporters for helping me to achieve this victory!  I am excited to turn my policy platform of education equity, fiscal transparency, expansion of innovative online learning approaches and strengthening private/public partnerships into action. I plan to hold myself accountable to further these goals and to bring ‘Community’ back into the Community College District.  Our students, faculty, staff and residents deserve this type of leadership and I look forward to working with my fellow trustees to take our district to the next level of excellence.”

An enthusiastic Sandoval told the Herald he was happy with the results and thinks the gap in votes will be too much for Enholm to overtake him.

UPDATE: When reached for comment Enholm responded, “It is very clear to me that voters are expressing their frustration and even anger about colleges and schools not having in-person classes for students. Both College Board incumbents, both County Board of Education incumbents, and many school district (K-5, K-12, and high school) incumbents could lose when the final vote totals are released. None of us incumbents caused the pandemic and we all made difficult decisions to assure safety of our students, staffs, and visitors by minimizing the risk of illness or death from the coronavirus. The voters have the right to remove incumbents from office for any reasons they choose.”

Walters Beating Gordon for College Board Ward 2 Seat

Career community college professional Judy Walters of Martinez, won the Ward 5 seat to the Contra Costa Community College District, with 37,776 votes or 49.6 percent of the total votes cast for the seat held by incumbent Vicki Gordon of Martinez who has been on the College Board since 2012. She garnered 28,095 votes or 36.9%, so far.  John Michaelson also ran, collecting 10,270 votes for third place.

UPDATE: When reached for comment Walters responded Thursday night Nov. 5, “I am honored by the trust voters have placed in me to be their representative on the Contra Costa Community College Board.  As promised, I will lead with integrity and use my experience to ensure the educational excellence of our colleges while keeping student success at the core of my decision-making.”

Ward 2 encompasses Lafayette, Orinda, Walnut Creek, Martinez, Rodeo, Crockett, and parts of Alamo and Pleasant Hill.

Unofficial election results for county Board of Education Areas 1 and 3 as of Tues., Nov. 3, 2020 at 11:44 pm. From CoCoVote.us.

County Board of Education Area 1 Race Too Close to Call

In the tight race for the Contra Costa County Board of Education Area 1 seat, incumbent Dr. Fatima Alleynne, had a narrow lead over challenger retired West Contra Costa Unified School District teacher Consuelo Lara, collecting 26,024 votes versus 25,586. “I do not feel comfortable claiming victory, as of yet,” she wrote in an email sent to the Herald. “Given the number of uncounted votes and how close the race is…I would prefer to wait for the process to conclude.”

The CCC Board of Education Area 1 includes Richmond, El Cerrito, Pinole, Crockett, and Hercules.

Farias Leading Incumbent Chavez for County Board of Education Area 3 Seat

In another County Board of Education race, AnaMarie Avila Farias was leading with 30,257 votes or 52.9 percent of the votes over incumbent Vicki Chavez with 26,871 votes for the Area 3 seat.  The Area 3 trustee represents Pacheco and parts of Clayton, Concord, Martinez, Pittsburg, Pleasant Hill, and Walnut Creek. The former Martinez councilwoman, Farias had previously run unsuccessfully for Supervisor against Federal Glover in 2016.

Next Election Results Update Friday at 5:00 PM

The Contra Costa Elections Division is continuing to count the ballots that arrived by yesterday and will continue to arrive for as long as 17 more days including today. They have 28 days to finish the count and certify the election. So, final results may be as much as four weeks away. The next update of results is expected this Friday at 5:00 p.m.

 

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Both incumbents trailing in Antioch School Board races: Lewis has commanding lead in Area 3, Hernandez leading in Area 1

Wednesday, November 4th, 2020

Unofficial election results for Antioch School Board Area 3 results from CoCoVote.us and Trustee-elect Dr. Clyde Lewis, Jr.

By Allen Payton

In the race for Antioch School Board in Areas 1 and 3, both incumbents, Board President Diane Gibson-Gray seeking her third term, and Trustee Crystal Sawyer-White seeking her second, were trailing their first-place challengers. Newcomer Antonio Hernandez is in the lead in Area 1 by 240 voted with 1,579 votes to Gibson-Gray’s 1,339 and in Area 3 Lewis is ahead of Sawyer-White by 775 votes, as of the 11:44 p.m. Election Night update from the Contra Costa Elections office.

In a distant third place in Area 1 is Alexis Medina who dropped out of the race, but so far has 755 votes followed by another newcomer George Young with 548. In Area 3 former Antioch Planning Commission Chair Kenny Turnage is in third place with 1,167 votes trailing Sawyer-White by 657 votes.

Lewis posted on his Facebook Wednesday morning, “I was humbled to learn (this morning) that I had in fact won my race for Antioch School Board District 3, as last night I intentionally turned off all media and headed to bed by 8 30pm. Wow I’m still in shock.

I would like to begin today by thanking my family, friends, neighbors and community members for your wonderful support through this race. You are all awesome! This race was by no means a walk in the park.

It is said that a person is judged by their competition and both of you worked hard during this campaign and in that spirit, I would like to thank Ken Turnage II and Crystal White for a mostly clean race. I’m looking forward to working with everyone to bring the changes needed to support our kiddos, our schools and our community.

Now that the race is over and many on the campaign ran on creating unity, let’s keep that spirit and bring the supports needed to push #Antioch to where it needs to be.

Again, thank you for your support…now the work begins…

#TrusteeDrClydeLewis  #LetsGetToWork  #CommunityBuilding”

On his Facebook page on Wednesday morning, Turnage posted a congratulatory message to Lewis writing, “I would like to thank everyone who helped and gave support to my campaign it was very much appreciated. I would also like to congratulate Clyde Lewis on his victory in the School Board Race. I am sure he will do a good job for our students!” Turnage, in his humorous style later posted, “In true Mission Impossible fashion, this Facebook page will self destruct in 48 hours….Que(ue) Music!”

No message was posted by Sawyer-White on either of her Facebook pages nor did she call Lewis to concede the election or congratulate him. But Lewis said he did receive a call from Trustee Ellie Householder congratulating him.

Unofficial election results for Antioch School Board Area 1 race. From CoCoVote.us

Area 1 Race

Hernandez posted a semi-victory message on his campaign Facebook page Wednesday morning, writing, “We did it! The election night results are showing that when all is done I am likely to be the Antioch Unified School District Area 1 Trustee!

I am so thankful for all the support that I received. It’s not often that people like me run for local office. I grew up in low income household and was a first-generation college student. With 70% of our students on free/reduced lunch, I have been in the shoes of our students. I am excited to get to work on addressing the challenges that these students face and creating equity.

This race was not easy, it pushed me harder than I ever could have imagined. Thank you for making this such an exciting race Diane Gibson-Gray, Georgeyoung4change, and Alexis Medina. I know that we’ll continue to see your leadership and service here in Antioch, we’ll need it!

There are countless people to thank for this outcome including many family and friends, but I want to give a shout out to my campaign manager and political mastermind, José Parra.

Let’s get to work!”

Gibson-Gray posted a concession message to Hernandez on her Facebook page Wednesday morning writing, “Congratulations Antonio Hernandez Trustee Elect for AUSD District 1. Thank you everyone who provided friendship and support over the years. Diane”

In a post on his Facebook page Wednesday morning Young wrote, “Congratulations to Clyde Lewis (Area 3) and Antonio Hernandez (Area 1) for winning the school board race. I look forward to working with both of you over the next few years to make the needed changes in the Antioch Unified Schools.”

Next Update Friday at 5:00 PM

The Contra Costa Elections Division is continuing to count the ballots that arrived by yesterday and will continue to arrive for as long as 17 more days including today. They have 28 days to finish the count and certify the election. So, final results may be as much as four weeks away. The next update of results is expected this Friday at 5:00 p.m.

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Thorpe leads for Antioch mayor, Barbanica, incumbents leading in council races

Wednesday, November 4th, 2020

Lamar Thorpe and unofficial election results as of Nov. 3, 2020 at 11:44 pm. Screenshot of CoCoVote.us website.

Davis winning Treasurer’s race, Simonsen leads in squeaker for City Clerk, the moot Measure T winning overwhelmingly

By Allen Payton

It appears enough voters in Antioch are satisfied with the work of the current council members as all five incumbers are either currently in the lead in their respective races or placed second in the case of the mayor’s race. as of the 11:44 p.m. Election Night update from the Contra Costa Elections office.

Mayor’s Race

Although there are still thousands of ballots left to be counted, Councilman Lamar Thorpe has a commanding lead over incumbent Mayor Sean Wright and three other challengers in the race for Mayor of Antioch. Thorpe currently has 11,442 votes to Wright’s 9,194 votes.

Julio Jesse Mendez is in a distant third place with 2,392 votes, followed by Gabe Makinano with 2,014 and Rakesh Kumar Christian with 908 votes. But combined those only total 25,950 votes while in 2016, the last presidential election year, there were 33,436 votes cast in the mayor’s race and more voters were expected to turn out in this year’s election. The county Elections Division has 28 days to finish counting all the ballots and certify the results. Plus, based on state law mail-in ballots postmarked by yesterday have up to 17 days to be received to still be counted. However, a 2,248-vote gap will most likely be difficult for Wright to close.

When reached for comment late Tuesday night, Thorpe said, “I want to thank the voters of Antioch for a very decisive victory. They are clear they want us to house homeless people. They are clear they want something done on police reform and they want more investment in youth programs.”
“Antioch is now the second largest city in Contra Costa County and its time for our government to act like it. We need to lead by example,” he continued. “We need to come up with solutions so we can start to be a leader in the region and frankly throughout the county.”

“I look forward to working with all council members and all residents to solve the challenges we face, whether they voted for me or not,” Thorpe added.

He also shared that Wright called him last night and conceded the race.

Council Races

In the races for city council, newcomer Mike Barbanica is beating former Councilman Tony Tiscareno in District 2 by 561 votes. When reached for comment, Tuesday night, Barbanica responded, “I appreciate the support of the residents of District 2 and I will work very hard at getting Antioch Back On Track,” repeating his campaign theme.

In a post on his Facebook page Wednesday morning Tiscareno wrote, “Congratulations to all who prevailed in the Antioch City Council and School Board last night. I had the great opportunity to serve our community for 6 years and I’m proud of the work we did during that time. Now it’s time for the new council to continue to move forward. Antioch voices were heard and now it’s time for us to support our leaders. Best of luck to all.”

He later added, “No sulking here, I want to thank my great friend Charlie Richard for his support and loyalty to my campaign, family and most importantly for our love of our labor movement.”

Unofficial election results for Antioch City Council District 1 and 2 as of Nov. 3, 2020 at 11:44 p.m. From CoCoVote.us

In District 1, incumbent Councilwoman Joy Motts is barely beating newcomer and challenger Tamisha Walker by just 50 votes. Former Antioch Mayor Pro Tem and Councilman Manny Soliz, Jr. is trailing Walker by 183 votes. Only 4,406 votes have been counted so far in that district. So, the race is too close to call. The winner will only serve a two-year term and will have to run again in 2022 after the district lines are redrawn, next year.

In a post on her campaign Facebook page Wednesday afternoon Walker wrote, “We are currently only 50 votes behind! This election is not over till every vote is counted!  We are in this together Antioch!”

Unofficial election results in Antioch City Council Districts 3 and 4 races as of Nov. 3, 2020 at 11:44 p.m. From CoCoVote.us

In the District 3 race, incumbent Councilwoman Lori Ogorchock is most likely headed for re-election to her second full term, having been re-elected in 2018 leading all three of her challengers with 2,796 votes. Newcomer Nichole Gardner is second place with 2,206 votes, trailing Ogorchock by 590 votes out of a total of 7,717 votes cast in the race. Parks & Recreation Commission Chair Marie Arce is in third place with 1,507 trailing Gardner by 699 votes and newcomer Antwon Webster is in fourth place with 1,208 votes, trailing Arce by 299 votes.

UPDATE: In a post on his personal Facebook page late Wednesday night Webster conceded writing, “It has been awesome running for City Council. I appreciate and would like to thank all my supporters and those who voted for me. The campaign team put in many hours going door to door with me and I truly appreciate their commitment. There is still work that needs to be done in order to move Antioch forward. I will continue to be a voice for the residents and speak up when a voice is needed. Cleaning up the city can still be done by holding our City Council accountable for the blight that surrounds us. I will remain engaged in economic development issues and support their survival and success. Regardless of the final outcome of the Mayors race, we must not lose faith in the fact that we, the residents of Antioch, have a voice and will be heard. Let’s stay positive and be wise in our decision making.”

Finally, in District 4, running for her third term on the council, incumbent Councilwoman Monica Wilson, with more than a majority of the votes at 55.39%, has a commanding lead over first-time candidate and Police Crime Prevention Commission Chair Sandra White by more than double. Wilson has 3,930 votes to White’s 1,943. The third candidate in the race, Alex John Astorga who spent no money to campaign is trailing White by 721 votes with 1,222. Whoever wins the election will have to run again in two years, following redistricting. Depending on how the new district lines are drawn, since the growth in the city has mainly been south and east, and Wilson lives on the northwest edge of the district, that may end up causing her to have to move to seek re-election should she win.

In a brief post on her Facebook page last night, Wilson wrote, “OMG! Thank You Antioch!”

Unofficial election results in Antioch City City Clerk and Treasurer races as of Nov. 3, 2020 at 11:44 p.m. From CoCoVote.us

City Treasurer & Clerk

In the race for City Treasurer, appointed incumbent Jim Davis with 12,916 votes is beating challenger Lauren Posada by 1,075 votes who has 11,841. In the Clerk’s race, incumbent Arne Simonsen has a smaller lead of just 526 votes over Antioch School Board Trustee Ellie Householder. He has 10,165 votes to her 9,639. Police Crime Prevention Commissioner Dwayne Eubanks is in a distant third place with 5,149 votes. With the remaining ballots left to count, the results in both races are still in question.

Unofficial election results in Antioch’s Measure T inititiave election as of Nov. 3, 2020 at 11:44 p.m. From CoCoVote.us

UPDATE In a post on her Facebook page Wednesday afternoon Householder conceded the election writing, “First of all, I want to thank all of you who exercised your civic duty and voted. I also want to express my immense gratitude towards my supporters; our numbers were superb. This race was unlike anything we’ve ever seen and even though we did not get the results that we hoped for there is still a lot to celebrate. Lastly, I would like to congratulate Arne Simonsen, MMC – Antioch City Clerk on his win and all of the other amazing folx [sic] who were elected in Antioch last night.”

Householder currently has 934 more votes than the 8,705 she garnered in her race for school board in 2018, a non-presidential election with a lower voter turnout than is expected this year.

Measure T

In spite of the fact the initiative is moot and can’t go into effect, with the passage of new state law known as SB-330 Housing Crisis Act of 2019, the voters of Antioch overwhelmingly voted to downzone private property owned by four landowners by over 97% and attempted to stop the 877 homes left to be allocated by passing Measure T, the Let Antioch Voters Decide: The Sand Creek Area Protection Initiative by 20,166 votes in favor or 77.67% to just 5,435 votes against or 21.33%

So, while the voters are telling the council they don’t want more homes in the undeveloped land in the Sand Creek area, the council will have to ignore that message and comply with state law by approve the new homes in the plans for any subdivision project submitted between now and January 2025 that complies with the city’s General Plan. If not, the city will face a minimum fine by the state of $10,000 per housing unit proposed in the development.

Next Results Update Friday at 5:00 PM

The Contra Costa Elections Division is continuing to count the ballots that arrived by yesterday and will continue to arrive for as long as 17 more days including today. They have 28 days to finish the count and certify the election. So, final results may be as much as four weeks away. The next update of results is expected this Friday at 5:00 p.m.

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