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Special election to fill Winkler’s seat may not be held in November, officials say

Posted: July 24, 2013 6:04 p.m.
Updated: July 24, 2013 6:04 p.m.

The Saugus Union School District board has agreed to further review whether former board member Stephen Winkler could hold his seat, meaning a special election in November to fill the vacated position is unlikely, district officials announced Wednesday.

Following a recommendation from the Los Angeles County Office of Education, board members voted Tuesday to authorize legal proceedings reviewing Winkler’s authority to retain his seat, Superintendent Joan Lucid said.

“Because of the time that it takes (for the legal review), it likely will run us out of time for the (November) election,” she said.

Winkler, who was elected in November 2011, lost his seat on the board in June amid claims he did not live in the district, as required by law.

Parents and others demanded the board take action after its newest member was found to have posted social media messages appearing sympathetic to Nazis and animal cruelty.

Winkler said he would not fight the decision.

Board members had asked the Office of Education for permission to hold a special election in November to fill Winkler’s seat for the next two years.

“The board will continue to work with legal counsel to resolve the election issue and keep the public informed as to next steps,” the district said in a statement issued Wednesday.

Three of the board’s five seats will be up for grabs in November, with all three incumbents — Doug Bryce, Paul De La Cerda and Judy Umeck — expected to stand for re-election.

All three plus the fourth member still on the board, Rose Koscielny, have served for at least two four-year terms.
On Twitter @LukeMMoney



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