Tehachapi’s Election Day races didn’t provide many surprises with incumbents in local races holding on to their seats across the board.
And with the first election results from the Kern County Election office in, the unofficial results show Mayor Ed Grimes winning re-election with nearly 38 percent of the vote. The final unofficial results show he received 1374 votes, while appointed incumbent Kim Nixon received 900 votes.
“I am really appreciative of the people of Tehachapi,” said Grimes. “They know we are going in the right direction, and they want to keep going in the right direction. I think their votes shows that.”
Nixon said she was honored that voters put their confidence her.
“It is a humbling experience to first be appointed and now elected, as it shows the appreciation for the work I have done,” she said, “I look forward to continuing to help develop the potential for small businesses owners and tourism for our community over my next term.”
Tehachapi Unified School District Trustee Leonard Evansic (4,793 votes) retained the seat to which he was previously appointed, winning over challenger Steven Vogel (3893 votes).
“I am humbled to be elected to serve another four years for the district,” Evansic said. “I will continue to do the best job I can to guide our district’s policies for improving the education we offer to our students.”
Meanwhile, there were victories for incumbents in two seats at the Tehachapi-Cummings County Water District, where incumbent director Jonathan Hall beat out Stanley Beckham with more than 55 percent of the vote, while fellow sitting director David Hadley collected nearly 53 percent of voter’s approval to knock off challenger David Shaw.
“I want to thank the residents of Tehachapi that gave me their vote of confidence and re-electing me for four more years,” Hadley said. “We have a lot of projects to do, including some we have had in the works for a while, and I look forward to getting them done.”
Hall was equally honored to continue his service for another four-year term, saying, “It’s not a glory job, it’s stewardship."
Some of the most tightly contested races on Tuesday were the three local community service districts.
Bear Valley incumbent Rick Zanutto (1084 votes) came away with another term as well as newly-elected Charlene LaClaire (994 votes). Zanutto and LaClaire had been targeted by an anonymous negative campaign in the last weeks before voting, but emerged from it with victory. Zanutto is an incumbent and LaClaire has served as a member of the district's finance committee.
In Golden Hills, sitting director Kathy Cassil (1232 votes) walked away with one of three seats with nearly 23 percent of the community’s votes, as did incumbent Eldwin “Ed” Kennedy (896 votes), and new director Larry Barrett (838 votes) who edged out the next highest candidate by 3 percent.
Stallion Springs was perhaps the closest race, as incumbents Dave Burt (636 votes) and Irene Gunshinan (603 votes), along with Clydell Lamkin (540 votes).
As expected, both City Treasurer Julie Drimakis and City Clerk Laura Jenkins, who ran unopposed, won their respective elections.
Finally, voters retained incumbents Dr. Sam Conklin (5786 votes) and Bill Steele (4328) on the Board of Directors of Tehachapi Valley Healthcare District.
Final unofficial results released by the Kern County Elections Office as of 4:27 a.m. on Nov. 7 are as follows:
Bear Valley Community Service District (2 seats available)
* Rick Zanutto, 1084 votes (25.92%)
* Charlene LaClaire, 994 votes (23.77%)
Scott Miller, 749 votes (17.91%)
Walter Ritchie, 671 votes (16.04%)
Chuck Reed, 382 votes (9.13%)
John V. McKeehan, 293 votes (7.01%)
City of Tehachapi Hall (2 seats available)
* Ed Grimes, 1374 votes (37.50%)
* Kim Nixon, 900 votes (24.63%)
Henry Schaeffer, 704 votes (19.27%)
Stanley Beckham, 667 votes (18.25%)
City Treasurer Julie Drimakis and City Clerk Laura Jenkins ran unopposed, both receiving more than 98% of the vote.
Golden Hills Community Service District (3 seats available)
* Kathy Cassil, 1232 votes (22.55%)
* Eldwin "Ed" Kennedy, 896 votes (16.48%)
* Larry Barrett, 838 votes (15.42%)
Allen Baumgarten, 675 votes (12.42%)
Phil Cornyn, 666 votes (12.25%)
John Foster, 632 votes (11.63%
Daulton Oliver, 467 votes (8.59%)
Stallion Springs CSD (3 seats available)
* David L. Burt, 636 votes (27.44%)
* Irene E. Gunshinan, 603 votes (26.01%)
Clydell Lamkin, 540 votes (23.30%)
Martel Martinez, 516 votes (22.26%)
Tehachapi-Cummings County Water District, Div. 2
* Jonathan Hall, 4953 votes (55.15%)
Stanley Beckham, 3912 votes (44.46%)
Tehachapi-Cummings County Water District, Div. 4
* David Hadley, 4512 votes (52.52%)
David Shaw, 4043 votes (47.06%)
Tehachapi Unified School District Board of Trustees, Area 1 Seat A
* Leonard Evansic, 4793 votes (54.82%)
Steven Vogel, 3893 votes (44.53%)
Tehachapi Valley Healthcare District Board of Directors (2 seats available)
* Sam Conklin, 5786 votes (40.01%)
* W. "Bill" Steele, 4328 votes (29.92%)
Henry L. Schaeffer, 4288 votes (29.65%)