Politics & Government

Election forum for Paso Robles candidates scheduled for tonight

Local citizens group Change Paso Robles Now is hosting an election forum tonight for candidates vying for Paso Robles’ various elected positions this November.

The free event, limited to 200 seats, is planned for 7 to 9 p.m. at the Paso Robles Inn Grand Ball Room, 1103 Spring St.

All candidates for the city’s elected positions were invited to participate, according to the group’s website at http://www.cprn2012.org.

Two four-year seats are open on the City Council this year. Incumbents Fred Strong and Nick Gilman will face challengers Steve Martin, Jim Reed and Jerry Jones for the spots. Jones is a write-in candidate, meaning his name won’t appear on the ballot but voters can write his name down as their chosen candidate.

The city’s mayor race — a two-year seat on the City Council — has two write-in candidates opposing Mayor Duane Picanco. They are residents Gary Nemeth and Jeff Rougeot.

The city’s Treasurer Mike Compton and City Clerk Dennis Fansler are also re-seeking their positions.

At the forum, presenters will pose questions to the candidates. Each candidate will respond to “10 pre-selected questions relating to important community issues,” followed by a monitored open-mic session for the public, the group’s website says.

Those with questions about the event can email organizers at cprn2012@aol.com.