Leads hold for SPUHS, SPESD trustee candidates, Measure I still ahead

November 17, 2000
Santa Paula News
By Peggy Kelly Santa Paula TimesThe release of absentee ballots didn't change any races in Santa Paula, including the High School and Elementary School districts as well as a controversial land-use measure patterned after SOAR.Santa Paula High School District held steady when two incumbents - Robert Salas and Eric Barragan - were reelected, the exact opposite of the Elementary District, where two newcomers - Ofelia de la Torre and George Morgan - won the seats vacated by Ben Saiz and Dr. Steven Shuel.Barragan and Salas easily cruised to victory early on to retain their posts at the SPUHS district, with semi-official results that would have been almost impossible to change when absentee ballots are counted. . .and the impossible didn't occur.Salas remained the top vote-getter with 5,462 votes, 43.5 percent, a slight percentage loss from last week when he had 44 percent with 4,319 votes.Barragan also won his second term with 4,154 votes, 33.1 percent, holding the same percentage as last week when he had 3,246 votes. Third place Shuel, who declined to run for reelection in the Santa Paula Elementary School District race, attained 23.1 percent - 2,894 votes - when the absentee votes were tallied; he made an impressive gain from last week when his vote count was 22.6 percent, or 2,222 votes.
De la Torre remained the top vote-getter for the Santa Paula Elementary School District board - she had previously served a term - with absentee ballots pushing her to 3,756 votes, 41.2 percent of the total, although slightly down from last week's numbers of 41.5 percent, 3,100 votes.Political newcomer George Morgan held on to second place with 2,914 votes, 31.9 percent of the total; his numbers last week were 32 percent of the vote, 2,388 votes. Chris Graham, who ran for the SPESD board two years ago, remained in third place with 2,413 votes, 26.4 percent of the total, showing an improvement over last week when he had placed third with 26.1 percent, 1,949 votes.Measure I received 3,954 votes, 54.5 percent of the total when the absentee ballots were tallied; those who voted against the Measure - which mandates development in Adams Canyon must be decided by voters - numbered 3,300 votes, 45.5 percent.A rough estimate based on Measure I votes alone show that just short of 70 percent of Santa Paula's 10,850 city registered voters went to the polls Nov. 7th. Although projections from the county prior to the election hovered at about 81 percent voter turnout, the countywide average is about 70 percent unofficially.

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