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Two City Council incumbents challenged by Kline
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The deadline has passed to file candidacies for Ceres City Council and voters will have three candidates to chose from on Nov. 3.

Council incumbents Ken Lane and Chris Vierra are running along with a challenger in Planning Commissioner Mike Kline. A potential fourth candidacy in Burton Bedwell did not materialize before nomination papers were due at 5 p.m. on Friday.

Lane and Vierra were both elected to the Ceres City Council in 2005. Kline, 51, ran unsuccessfully in a three-man City Council race in 2007, losing the election by 149 votes behind Rob Phipps. Kline also ran for Ceres School Board in 1999 and 2001. The 1976 graduate of Ceres High School is a salesman for Tony's Fine Foods.

Both Lane and Vierra said the City Council has governed responsibly and has a good handle on city matters during tough budget times. They both also point to a number of significant projects which the council has accomplished, including construction of the Community Center and the Ceres River Bluff Regional Park, as well as the new Whimore interchange.

Kline says he can offer a "different opinion" about the budget crisis.

"I figure I came close last time and I just figured I'd give it another shot," said Kline.

School Board candidates

The race for the Ceres School Board grew competitive last week. The terms of Teresa Guerrero, Edgar Romo, Betty Davis and Mike Welsh expire this year.

Incumbent Teresa Guerrero and retired teacher Valli Wigt are locked in competition for the Trustee Area 3 seat.

In Trustee Area 5, Romo is being challenged by Lourdes Perez, an employee of the Ceres Partnership for Healthy Children.

Welsh is running in Trustee Area 2 unopposed.

For the at-large seat on the Ceres School Board, Brian Kline is taking on incumbent Betty Davis.

This is the first year that CUSD voters will be electing voters on the basis of individualized trustee areas. Until 2013, the district will retain two at-large seats which are now occupied by Davis and Eric Ingwerson.

Hughson races

In the Hughson Unified School District Board of Trustees race, candidates are incumbents Randy Heckman, Cindy Cunningham-Gipp and Rick Applegate, as well as Erik M. Lee, a school business manager.

Four director seats in the Hughson Fire Protection District are also up for grabs: Gus Villarreal and Raymond Camagna, who each serve four-year terms, and Jeffrey Serpa, who is in a two-year seat. The fourth seat is vacant. Candidates for the four-year term are Camagna, Robert "Bob" Hedrick and Gus Villarreal.

The two-year seat has an extended nomination period until today, giving Serpa a possible competitor.

Under California law, the filing deadline for the five local races in which incumbents are not seeking reelection is now extended until 5 p.m. on Aug. 12. Any potential candidate can submit paperwork to run for office until that date, except for incumbents who failed to file by Friday's deadline.

According to Stanislaus County Clerk-Recorder Lee Lundrigan, the law was developed to give those who would have been concerned about running against powerful incumbents to enter what are now wide-open races.

Keyes races

Because Marianne Pietrzyk did not file for re-election, nominations are open until today for persons wishing to fill her seat on the Keyes Union School District Board. Candidates thus far are incumbent Remona Rayburn, as well as Antonio Aguilar, Jimmy Emmons Sr., Sophia Munoz-Jimenez, Jeff Reed and Christopher Reynolds.

Three seats on the Keyes Community Services District are also up for grabs now filled by Davey Landers, Harinder Grewal and Henry Benavides. All three are unopposed. Appointed incumbent Casey Chadwick is the lone candidate for the two-year seat and will be appointed.

Keyes Municipal Advisory Council members Harinder Grewal and Karen Poppen are each seeking re-election without opposition.

Other races

Westport Fire Protection District has an election for new board members. The terms of Martin L. Avila and Eddie Amador Jr. are up for grabs and they are the lone candidates for their seats. The Stanislaus County Board of Supervisors will appoint the two since there is no opposition.

Turlock Irrigation District has three open seats in November. Incumbent Director Charlie Fernandes in Division 2 (Ceres area) has filed for re-election without opposition so far. The term of Michael Berryhill in Division 3 (South Modesto and west Ceres) is also up. He chose not to run for re-election for candidates have until today to file for the seat. Candidates to fill Berryhill's seat thus far are Joe Alamo and Keith Silva.

The nomination filing period for the TID Division 5 race has also been extended to today since incumbent Randy Fiorini did not file. The seat, which represents the Turlock and Merced County areas, has drawn candidacies in Ron Macedo and Pamela Sweeten.

Ceres voters will be voting for a trustee to serve on the Stanislaus County Board of Education Division 5 seat. Luis L. Molina, the incumbent board member who lives in Patterson, has filed for re-election and is unopposed.

The South Modesto Municipal Advisory Council (MAC) has extended nominations. Candidates are Silvia Camarillo, and Rebecca Harrington. The incumbent has not filed. Three seats are open. Two two-year seats are open and has drawn only one candidate in Jaime Jay Lomeli Jr.

Candidate filing has been extended for the Monterey Park Tract Community Services District where nobody filed for three seats that are open. The same situation has occurred for the Riverdale Park Community Services District where two seats are open.

No candidates has come forth for the Ceres Fire Protection District. The district contracts with the city of Ceres to supply fire suppression services to a small rural area outside of the Ceres city limits.

For more information on the Nov. 3 elections, visit or call the County Clerk-Recorder's Office at 525-5200. Spanish speakers can contact the Clerk-Recorder's Office at 525-5230.

To vote in the Nov. 3 election, Stanislaus County residents must be United States citizens, not in prison or on parole for conviction of a felony, at least 18 years of age on Nov. 3 and be registered to vote by Oct. 19.