Tuesday, November 8, 2022

Small City Roundup: Races Called in Blue Lake, Ferndale, Trinidad

Posted By on Tue, Nov 8, 2022 at 9:20 PM

Any drama and suspense proved short lived on Election Night in Humboldt County's smaller city council races. Here's a rundown of the winners.

We'll note that while thousands of votes remain uncounted countywide, we believe the leads held in the races below are insurmountable.

Blue Lake
Vying for two four-year terms, Educator/photographer Elizabeth Mackay and registered nurse Elise Germaine Scafini sailed to victory, both taking 35 percent of the vote to heavy equipment operator Christopher Edgar's 30 percent.

Down in the Cream City, Randall John Cady ran away with the race for mayor, finishing with 51 percent of the vote, trailed by sitting Councilmembers Stephen Avis' 37 percent and Cory Nunes' 12 percent. Alan "Skip" Jorgensen and Jennifer Fisk-Becker, meanwhile, will take the two open seats on the city council, having won 33 percent and 31 percent of the vote respectively. Stuart Altschuler, meanwhile, finished the race with 22 percent of the vote, trailed by Brenda Vait with 14 percent.

Election Night proved to be a good one for appointed incumbents in Trinidad, with Cheryl Kelly and Jack Tuttle taking two of three open seats on the council, with 31 percent and 29 percent of the vote, respectively. Kati Breckenridge took the third open seat with 29 percent of the vote, while Michael Morgan fell short with 11 percent.

City councils in Blue Lake, Trinidad and Ferndale are due for a makeover, with more than eight contested seats open between them. Here’s a quick look at each of the races.

Blue Lake
Sunny Blue Lake saw two candidates file to fill two two-year terms on the council, so high school administrator Angela Lee Shull and educator/artist Alice Rose Finen are running unopposed. But the council also has two open seats with four-year terms, with three qualified candidates for voters to choose from.

Educator/photographer Elizabeth Mackay currently leads a tight race with 40 percent of the vote, followed by registered nurse Elise Germaine Scafani's 35.71 percents. Heavy equipment operator Christopher Edgar currently trails with 24.29 percent of the 70 votes counted thus far.

The Cream City will be deciding its next mayor and who will hold two contested seats on the city council.

The early count has sitting Councilmember Stephen Avis and retiree Randall Cady in a dead heat with 43.75 percent of the vote, with self-employed tax specialist Cory Nunes trailing with 12.50 percent of the 128 ballots counted thus far.

On the council side of things, four candidates are running for two open seats. In the first returns — comprised entirely of early votes and vote-by-mail ballots that arrived at the Elections Office prior to Election Day — retired educator Alan "Skip" Jorgensen leads with 32.92 percent of the 243 votes counted, trailed by Jennifer Fisk-Becker's 30.45 percent, psychologist Stuart Altschuler's 24.28 percent and local business owner Brenda Vait's 12.35 percent.

Up in the seaside city of Trinidad, four candidates are vying for two open seats on the city council.

In the first return of the night, appointed incumbent Cheryl Kelly and Kati Breckenridge are tied for the lead with 31.52 percent of the vote, trailed by appointed incumbent Jack Tuttle with 30.43 percent and local business owner Michael Morgan with 6.52 percent.

A total of 92 ballots have been counted in the race thus far.

Check back first thing tomorrow morning for full election night results.
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Thadeus Greenson

Thadeus Greenson is the news editor of the North Coast Journal.

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