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Ripon Unified gears up for area elections
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Ripon Unified school board members will represent their Trustee Area.
“You will also represent the entire community,” said Bea Lingenfelter of the League of Women Voters of San Joaquin County.
She was part of the recent Candidate Informational meeting at the Ripon Memorial Library.
Lingenfelter noted that the purpose of the League is to educate and inform voters and possible candidates.
For the first time, Ripon voters will select their school board representative based on the Trustee Area in which they reside come Nov. 8.
Those seeking to run for the two seats currently occupied by Mike Fisher and Christina Orlando are now required to reside in those Trustee Areas. In the event that Fisher and Orlando decide to run again and go unopposed on the ballot, they’ll be re-appointed to their post, in turn, avoiding the election process, according to Lingenfelter.
The reapportionment plan was developed by school board members Kit Oase and Ernie Tyhurst.
The election process was conducted at-large.
Oase pointed out a large disparity in some of those areas occurred over time due in part to population and the growth of the city.
“Things got out of whack – we had one area with (a population) of 1,600 and another with 4,000,” said Oase, who did his dissertation on reapportionment in public schools.
Tyhurst worked for the City of Ripon, handling the consensus on more than one occasion in his role as Director of Planning and Economic Development.
He and Oase attended countless meetings while doing most of the legwork to come up with a plan that called for equal population area, compactness of territories, and one school per Trustee Area.
These five areas are divvied up as equally as possible yet will likely change based on Ripon’s growth.
For those looking to be on the ballot, they’ll conduct their campaigning strictly within their Trustee Area.
The filing period will go from July 18 through Aug. 12.
For more information, call the Registrar of Voters Office at 44 N. San Joaquin St., Stockton, 209-468-8945.