It’s a three-bedroom, two-bath, moderately-sized family home in an older neighborhood.
And it’s also the most popular choice to reside in for Manteca Unified School Board candidates looking to unseat incumbents in November.
Two candidates have listed the residence at 624 Verda Drive on the filing paperwork submitted to the San Joaquin County Registrar of Voters. The Bulletin reported earlier this week that 21-year-old Alexander Bronson – a Lincoln High School graduate that was heavily involved in Stockton youth activities – is registered using that address despite the fact that the landlord does not know who he is.
And he wasn’t the first to consider it as a home choice when throwing his hat into the ring of educational politics.
Ashlee Drain – a Stockton resident running to unseat longtime board member Manuel Medeiros and represent a sliver of the Weston Ranch area she claims to call her home base – used the exact same address on her paperwork before settling on a Weston Ranch address that she registered to vote with one day before filing her campaign paperwork.
The only problem was that she was still using the old address – which would have put her in incumbent Don Scholl’s district and technically made her a housemate of Bronson. So instead of getting a new sheet, she simply crossed out the 624 Vera address and wrote in the one that coincided with the registration form she had filled out 24 hours prior.
That same mistake was repeated on at least two forms included in the paper files currently being kept at by the registrar. People wishing to see it can make an appointment – pictures and photocopies are not allowed.
Drain’s candidacy came into question when a Facebook video of her railing against a low-income housing developer painted the picture that she lived not on out the outskirts of Weston Ranch, as she claimed, but more in downtown Stockton.
And when a concerned citizen started raising questions about Bronson’s status, they learned that the home he claims to have lived in was owned by a local couple with real estate interests in the community and that they require anybody over the age of 18 living in the house to be a signer on the lease. Bronson’s name does not appear anywhere on the lease.
And it appears that neither Drain nor Bronson were alone when they took the political plunge.
They had help in the form of current Board of Education trustee Sam Fant.
In both instances Fant was put down as a source that could verify the information contained within the respective ballot designation worksheets as being accurate and the truth
Because the address registered to each individual corresponded to the address on the nomination paperwork that was filed, both qualified for the ballot.
Phone calls to Drain, Bronson and Fant Friday evening were not returned.
Verda Drive is a block north of West Louise Avenue between Main Street and North Union Road.