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Saugus district calls for special election

Posted: July 3, 2013 4:55 p.m.
Updated: July 3, 2013 4:55 p.m.

The Saugus Union School District board has voted to move forward with a special election to replace former board member Stephen Winkler, whose seat was vacated amid evidence he lives outside the district.

But the final decision, board President Judy Umeck said Wednesday, is in the hands of the Los Angeles County superintendent of schools, who will make the final determination on calling a special election.

Tuesday’s school board vote comes two weeks after board members voted 4-1 to vacate Winkler’s seat after reviewing allegations that he actually lived in Sylmar, not in Valencia as he claimed.

Since the district has another election scheduled in November, the board’s vote would consolidate his empty seat with others already scheduled for a vote at that time.

The board had previously agreed to censure Winkler for his online activities, which included posts on Facebook, Twitter and allegedly on YouTube depicting animal cruelty and sympathetic references to Nazism.

Unlike other entities that have filled vacancies this year, including the William S. Hart Union High School District board and the College of the Canyons Board of Trustees, the Saugus district was not able to make a provisional appointment to fill Winkler’s seat because of stipulations in state law.

A district is not allowed to make a provisional appointment to fill a board vacancy if the vacancy occurs less than six months prior to the next regularly scheduled board election.
On Twitter @LukeMMoney



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