Candidates begin to declare their intentions to run

Community services, school and health care seats are at stake

ktanner@thetribunenews.comJuly 17, 2014 

A few members of local agency boards have already decided to seek re-election Nov. 4. At least one director has decided to bow out. The others either haven’t yet made up their minds or, if they have, they’re not yet ready to announce their decisions.

The nomination period for the general election is from July 14 to Aug. 8 at the county’s Election Division. If an incumbent doesn’t run again for office (except for being termed out or redistricted), that deadline for other candidates is extended to Aug. 13.

Cambria Community Services District: Officials say the town’s water supply is so short, it could go dry before the next rainy season arrives. The district faces proposed increases for rates that aren’t covering expenses; getting permits and funding for an emergency water supply project and then getting it completed; aging infrastructure; and the loss of at least five key employees.

The two CCSD directors up for election this year are in the race. Board President Jim Bahringer said he’d filed his paperwork July 14. Director Mike Thompson told The Cambrian on July 4 that he would submit papers to keep his seat on the Board of Directors. He’d been wrestling with the decision, he said, when a supporter told him that Thompson owes it to the people who supported him to finish what the board has started on Cambria’s water shortage.

Under an emergency permit, the district is building an emergency water-supply project to provide the district’s current residents up to 250 acre-feet a year, with the plant only being used during declared water-shortage emergencies. The project on district property on San Simeon Creek Road would treat brackish water to remove various elements before reinjecting the treated water back into the aquifer to flow into district wells, the aquifer and the lagoon.

The board’s next meeting is at 12:30 p.m. Thursday, July 24, for a public hearing on a rate increase to pay for the project. The meeting is to be at the Veterans Memorial Building, 1000 Main St.

Coast Unified School District Board of Trustees: Board President Del Clegg and board Clerk Dianne Brooke are up for election this year; Clegg has served since 2007, and Brooke has served three terms.

Brooke said Monday, July 7, that she’s undecided about whether or not to run for a fourth term; Clegg was unavailable to comment because he was out of town.

The new superintendent started work July 1, as did the new high school principal; a new business/finance officer is expected to start work at the district July 15.

The board’s next meeting is Thursday, Aug. 14, in the Old Grammar School, 1350 Main St.

Cambria Community Healthcare District Board of Trustees: Board President Bob Putney and trustees Frank Fratto and Mike McLaughlin are at the end of their terms. None has yet indicated his election intentions, although McLaughlin said July 11 that he had just returned from a vacation and is “about to decide whether to run or not.”

The health care district and new administrator Robert Sayers are dealing with declining Medicare reimbursement, rising costs, a debate about wages and benefits for paramedics and other employees, an aging building, and an ongoing process to co-locate or otherwise comingle with the Cambria services district.

The board’s next meeting is at 6 p.m. Tuesday, July 29, at Rabobank, 1070 Main St.

San Simeon Community Services District Board of Directors: Chairman Ralph McAdams said April 15 that he doesn’t intend to run again, while Director Ken Patel said July 8 that he will.

That board also faces a shortage of water, supplying enough wastewater to be treated and distributed as nonpotable water for certain kinds of irrigation, and a likely reassignment of their professional services management agreement with Ultura Water.

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