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UPDATE: Strickland throws hat into the ring for Assembly

Posted: September 20, 2011 4:29 p.m.
Updated: September 20, 2011 4:29 p.m.

Paul B. Strickland formally announced Tuesday he is running in November 2012 for the California 38th District Assembly seat, a position currently held by his boss, Assemblyman Cameron Smyth.

“Of course, I’m excited to by running in the 38th District,” said Strickland, Santa Clarita Valley field representative for Smyth.

Strickland, 69, said working for Smyth has given him a better understanding of the current conditions in the entire district.

When asked if his candidacy would bring about any changes in the way he conducts his job as aide for Smyth,
Strickland said he expects to follow any and all rules regarding such a working relationship.

“There are certain rules I have to abide by and I will abide by them,” he said.

As a 10-year veteran board member for the William S. Hart Union High School District and chairman of the Santa Clarita’s Arts Commission, he is now the second person to officially announce his candidacy for the Assembly seat.

On Sept. 8, Patricia McKeon, wife of Congressman Howard “Buck” McKeon, R-Santa Clarita, officially launched her campaign for state Assembly in November 2012.

COC board member Scott Wilk, 53, is also expected to officially announce his candidacy for the seat.
Smyth has been termed out of the position.

Strickland has been a fixture of Santa Clarita Valley’s political landscape for several years.

“I decided to run because it’s something I’ve always wanted to do,” he said in a visit to The Signal on Tuesday afternoon. “I clearly think I have the background for this.

“I have been elected four different times in our valley. None of those elections were easy; they were always contested,” he said. He also noted his participation on the Cemex Advisory Committee, the Open Space Committee and at “numerous” Whittaker-Bermite mediation sessions.

“I’m a person that understands, from a hands-on aspect, how difficult it is to work in our valley with all these restrictions, antiquated laws by the state and unfunded mandates that strap us and that keep small businesses and municipalities in the Assembly district — and also school districts — from being able to do the job they could do if they had local control of these resources.”

The married father of three has a long resume in the film industry’s animation world with many screen credits heading several animation teams, including: “Jetsons, The Movie,” “The Pink Panther,” The Smurfs,” “Yogi Bear’s Treasure Hunt,” “Pac Man,” “Flintstones Kids,” “Popeye,” “A Pup Named Scooby Doo,” “Back To The Future,” “A Wish For Wings That Work,” “Shelly Duvall’s Bedtime Stories,” “Iron Man” and “Fantastic Four.”

In responding to news of Strickland’s announced candidacy, Wilk said: “Paul Strickland is a friend of mine and a good man. I wish him well.”

Patricia McKeon, 68,  responded to the same news via email, saying “I’ve known Paul a long time and am eager to have him join me in a campaign of ideas on how to create jobs and restore accountability to state government.”
Assemblyman Cameron Smyth could not be reached for comment.


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