Aguirre, Krause, Cook: City Council leaders hold as new vote tally released

November 15, 2002
Santa Paula News
By Peggy Kelly Santa Paula TimesThe new vote tally released by the county Elections Division shows that the three top contenders for Santa Paula City Council, Dr. Gabino Aguirre, Mary Ann Krause and Rick Cook, are firmly holding onto their winning positions, although their leads fell slightly among the seven candidates.Aguirre, a Moorpark high school principal, remains the top vote-getter with a total of 3,116 votes, or 20.3 percent. Urban Planner Krause, like Aguirre, a political newcomer, retains second place with 2,416 votes, or 15.8 percent of the vote. Cook, a retired SPPD officer and a council incumbent winning his second term of office, held on to third place with 2,262 votes, or 14.7 percent, close to his 1998 winning vote tally when he was the top favorite of candidates.Last week’s figures had shown Aguirre with 20.6 percent of the vote, Krause with 15.7 percent and Cook with 14.8 percent.According to the latest semiofficial figures, Cook kept his 122-vote lead over Rita Graham; Graham received 2,140 votes, or 14 percent. Al Escoto had 2,073 votes, or 13.5 percent while John Wisda had 1,799 votes, or 11.7 percent.
Laura Flores Espinosa, who was seeking her third council term as a write-in candidate after missing the filing deadline, failed in her bid for reelection in spite of an aggressive campaign led by an army of volunteers. Espinosa placed last with 1,532 votes; the county did not list the percentage of write-in ballots on their latest tally release. An Elections Division spokeswoman said the office will not confirm if all the write-in votes were for Espinosa, the top campaign money-raiser - over $16,000, a new city spending record - until a later date. Tentatively, it appears Espinosa’s cost per vote is approximately $1.10 each.There were 309 absentee ballots and about 100 provisional ballots that remained to be counted; election results must be certified Nov. 26th.

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