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City Council Candidates Kick Off Campaigns

Monday is the first day to "pull papers," the initial step to run for Watsonville City Council in the November election.

Watsonville City Council appointees Lowell Hurst and Felipe Hernandez plan to defend their positions in the November election.

Both men picked up paperwork at the Watsonville City Clerk's Office Monday morning to file for candidacy, according to City Clerk Beatriz Flores, though Hurst actually .

“I think the city needs good leadership and I have a little experience," said Hurst. "I’m glad to help. I’ve got some time on my hands.”

Hurst, who lives on Magnolia Court, is a retired Watsonville High School agriculture teacher. He served on the council from 1989 until he termed out in 1998, then was appointed to the District 3 seat in April 2011 after Bill Neighbors resigned.

Four of seven seats on the Watsonville City Council are up for election this fall.

Felipe Hernandez, when Manuel Bersamin resigned earlier this year, also picked up his paperwork Monday, according to Flores. He was chosen by city council members over fellow planning commissioner Marty Corely. At the time, Corely said he also would seek election in November.

Trina Coffman-Gomez, another Watsonville planning commissioner, has an appointment to get candidate papers Tuesday, Flores said. Coffman-Gomez would be vying to represent District 6, a position currently held by City Council Member Emilio Martinez.

When asked Monday if he would seek reelection, Martinez responded, "No comment just yet."

The fourth seat up for election is District 2. Council Member Oscar Rios told the Santa Cruz Sentinel he will not run for another term.

The nomination period for the Nov. 6 election ends Friday, Aug. 10. In races with an incumbent. Interested Watsonville residents who live within one of the districts up for election can go to the Watsonville City Clerk’s Office on the fourth floor at 275 Main St. from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday. Nomination documents must be filed no later than 5 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 10 (the period is extended to Aug. 15 if the incumbent chooses not to file). Contact the City Clerk’s Office for an appointment at 831-768-3040.

At Hurst's 10 a.m. appointment at the City Clerk's Office on Monday, about a dozen supporters joined him.

Business development and job creation are key concerns said Hurst, who thinks that will help with some of the social issues in the community. The mobile home rent control stabilization ordinance on the November ballot is another important issue because it will affect a lot of fixed-income senior citizens.

“I like to think that I’m good for another term and that I can actually make a difference and bring some assistance to all the people in the valley," said Hurst, 64. “It really helps that I’m retired but I’m not tired."

randy July 17, 2012 at 12:40 AM
Lowell... do you need some "juice" for your campaign headquarters
David H. Perez July 17, 2012 at 03:30 AM
So Lowell, if you win, that means 4 more years of voting with the dysfunctional majority??? Sorry, I can't drink to that.
randy July 17, 2012 at 03:52 AM
Did you say CAN'T DRINK TO THAT.. oh that is good
Jennifer Squires July 17, 2012 at 04:18 AM
Play nice, guys.

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