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Declarations continue for 2013 local elections

Posted: July 27, 2013 6:23 p.m.
Updated: July 27, 2013 6:23 p.m.

The steady stream of Santa Clarita Valley incumbents seeking re-election to their board seats in November has continued over the past week, but some new faces are starting to make their intent to run known.

Newhall resident Ken Chase has decided to potentially take on a trio of incumbents, announcing his intention to run for a seat on the Sulphur Springs School District board.

Reached by phone earlier this week, Chase said he thinks his background as an accountant would bring a valuable perspective to a district still working to recover after the recent recession.

“I feel that background will help the district ensure money is spent wisely,” he said.

He also cited his knowledge of the district, where his two children went to school, as a reason why he decided to run.

Chase has previously served on school site councils in the Sulphur Springs district and is also a member of the district’s Measure CK citizens’ bond oversight committee.


There are also two non-incumbents who are planning runs in the Saugus Union School District.

Valencia resident Bruce Fox, is a former board member in the Castaic Union School District and a current lieutenant in the Glendale Police Department.

Fox told The Signal Saturday he would bring energy to the board, if elected.

“By nature I’m a very energetic and detail-oriented guy,” he said. “And when it comes to school issues, much of the stuff gets really complex and you have to dig deep into them and work with staff to make sure things are working as they should.”

Fox was also a candidate during the appointment process for the open seat in the William S. Hart Union High School District earlier this year. That seat eventually went to Chris Fall.

Fox said if elected, he would examine how the district interacts with parents and students.

“I think we need to improve communication a little bit in our district,” he said, adding that he would like to see more emails and other notifications sent out to parents.

The second non-incumbent seeking a Saugus district board seat is Saugus resident Chris Trunkey.

Trunkey has been involved in parent-teacher associations and school site councils in the Saugus district and also sits on the Measure V citizens’ oversight committee for the William S. Hart Union High School District.

“I have always been very involved in my kids’ education and this is just another thing I can do for kids in the community: participate in the process,” Trunkey said Saturday.

If elected, Trunkey said he would focus on reducing class size.

“I think overall we need to continue to work with teachers and administrators to increase the quality of education at our elementary schools,” he said. “Otherwise I think we will continue to get competition from private and charter schools.”

Both Fox and Trunkey also cited their firsthand knowledge, gleaned from when their children attended school in the district, as reasons they would make good board members.

As it stands, Fox and Trunkey would have to win more votes than the three incumbents in the Saugus Union School District — Doug Bryce, Paul De La Cerda and Judy Umeck — to claim a seat on the board.

Newhall County Water District
The three incumbents in the Newhall County Water District have all also officially declared they will seek another term.

B.J. Atkins, the board’s current vice president, and board member Kathy Colley announced their plan to run for another term. Water district board President Maria Gutzeit had previously told The Signal she plans to seek another term.

All incumbents in the Hart district, Newhall School District and Santa Clarita Community College District have announced their intention to stand for re-election in November.
On Twitter @LukeMMoney


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