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Lafayette Candidates Forum

The Lafayette Candidates Forum will take place on Thursday, Oct. 4, at 7:00 p.m., in the Manzanita Room at the Lafayette Community Center, 500 St. Mary’s Rd.

The event, sponsored by the Lafayette Homeowners Council, will allow candidates for Lafayette City Council and Lafayette School District’s Board of Governors to speak to the public.

The five candidates for the three open spots on Lafayette’s City Council will be in attendance. They are Mike Anderson, Rob Lobron, Mark Mitchell, Traci Reilly and Yolanda “Jolie” Vega.

All four candidates for the two open spots on the Lafayette School District’s Board of Governors will also be in attendance. They are Jean Follmer, Quinlan Tom, Nancy Wallace and Don Wolf.

Posted on Friday, September 21st, 2012
Under: election, Lafayette, Schools | No Comments »

Moraga-Orinda Fire District board seat nominations being accepted

Nominations for prospective Moraga-Orinda Fire District board members are being accepted through Aug. 10. Elections will be held in November for three districts including Division 3, which covers southwest Orinda, western Moraga and Canyon.

That seat was left vacant earlier this year by Dick Olsen, who stepped down in February. If elected, the candidate would finish out the remaining two years of the four-year term.

Seats are also up for Division 5, which covers north Orinda and was vacated earlier this year by Brook Mancinelli, and Division 2 covering north Moraga and Rheem Valley. That seat is currently occupied by board President Fred Weil.

The candidate filing period runs through Aug. 10. For information, contact the Contra Costa County Elections Division at 925-335-7800 or

Posted on Friday, July 13th, 2012
Under: election, Lamorinda | No Comments »

Saint Mary’s not chosen for presidential debate

Updated story with quotes from Saint Mary’s, Commission on Presidential debates just posted here.

Saint Mary’s College will not host a debate during the 2012 presidential election, the Commission on Presidential Debates announced today.

The small, private college in Moraga had applied to be one of four sites to hold one of four nationally-televised debates — three for presidential candidates and one for vice presidential candidates — to be held next October.

The University of Denver, Hofstra University in Hempstead, NY and Lynn University in Boca Raton, Fla. were chosen to host presidential debates. Centre College in Danville, Ky. will hold the vice presidential debate, and Washington University in St. Louis will serve as a backup site.

Posted on Monday, October 31st, 2011
Under: election, Moraga, Schools | 3 Comments »

What are your top stories for 2010?

We’ve got our list of the top Lamorinda stories in 2010. You can read it here. But we’re interested in your thoughts. What do you think made the biggest news this year? Let us know in the comments!

Posted on Thursday, December 30th, 2010
Under: election, Lafayette, Lamorinda, Moraga, Orinda, Roads, Schools, Sports | No Comments »

Lamorinda week in review

Closure at last in the Orinda council and school board races.

Quiet Orinda is unable to convince the City Council to ban, or even study banning, leaf blowers.

Community groups are loving the Acalanes school district’s sports fields to death.

A dryer fire damages an Orinda home.

The Murray Lane Trail is opening tomorrow.

Orinda Academy teacher wins $10,000 award.

Acalanes High boys and Campolino High girls win NCS water polo titles. Meanwhile, the football teams gear up for the playoffs.

The Gaels pick up a big win against St. John’s, plus a laugher against Point Loma. The women team, however, loses to Cal.

Posted on Friday, November 19th, 2010
Under: election, Lafayette, Lamorinda, Moraga, Orinda, Schools, Sports | 1 Comment »

Lamorinda hearts voting

Voter turnout in Lafayette, Moraga and Orinda was high, which, although this is my first election season in Lamorinda, I’m sure is not really a surprise. There technically could be some additional votes added to the totals as elections officers count provisional, challenged and damaged ballots, but here’s your turnout by city (based on an Excel spreadsheet provided by the county, because I’m a glutton for punishment):

Lafayette: 74 percent
Moraga: 71 percent
Orinda: 75 percent

Voter turnout for Contra Costa County overall was 62.75 percent.

Posted on Tuesday, November 16th, 2010
Under: election, Lafayette, Lamorinda, Moraga, Orinda | No Comments »

Monday afternoon election update

The county released a fresh batch of vote totals today. The numbers in Orinda changed slightly, but the results didn’t.

The new numbers reflect the vote-by-mail ballots returned through Election Day. There are still about 15,000 uncounted ballots countywide, according to Contra Costa Clerk-Recorder Steve Weir, including about 11,000 provisional ballots. Not sure how many are from Orinda, but Weir points out that not all the provisional ballots will ultimately count.

Sue Severson’s lead over Scott Zeller for the third council seat has grown from a razor-thin 59 votes to nearly 500. Barring something uber-dramatic, Severson will return to the council. Amy Worth, of course, will return as well; Dean Orr will take Tom McCormick’s seat.

Tyson Krumholz’s lead over Bekki Van Voorhis-Gilbert in the school board has dropped from 177 last week to 159. Much closer than the City Council race, but it’s still unlikely the remaining ballots will have an impact. It looks like Krumholz will join fellow newcomers Julie Rossiter and Christopher Severson on the board.

Orinda City Council

Candidate Percent Votes
*Amy Worth (i) 25.58 5,240
*Dean Orr 20.28 4,154
*Sue Severson (i) 20.23 4,144
Scott Zeller 17.87 3,662
Tom McCormick (i) 16.04 3,287

Orinda Union school board

Candidate Percent Votes
*Julie Rossiter 22.62 4,214
*Christopher Severson 21.27 3,885
*Tyson Krumholz 20.05 3,734
B. Van Voorhis-Gilbert 19.57 3,575
Sarah Butler 17.29 3,220

Posted on Monday, November 15th, 2010
Under: election, Orinda, Schools | No Comments »

Lamorinda week in review

The Orinda council and school board races continue to widen, and Sue Severson’s council seat appears to be safe.

The Dollar Tree is headed for the Rheem shopping center. So is the California Independent Film Festival.

Jill Keimach takes over as Moraga’s town manager.

Blood is found on a Lafayette ATM, and no one really knows how it got there.

The Lafayette council moves toward making more than $500,000 in budget cuts (background here).

The Matadors are DFAL champs. And there’s lots of Lamorindans in the NCS water polo championships.

Posted on Friday, November 12th, 2010
Under: election, Lafayette, Lamorinda, Moraga, Orinda, Schools, Sports | No Comments »

ELECTION UPDATE: Severson’s seat seems safe

The gap between those who appear to have won seats on the Orinda council and school board and those who have not continues to widen.

It seems safe to say Sue Severson has held onto her council seat. Her lead over challenger Scott Zeller has grown from 59 votes earlier this week to more than 400.

The school board race remains close. Tyson Krumholz’s lead over Bekki Van Voorhis-Gilbert has held (mostly) steady, dropping from 177 to 172 votes.

I just got off the phone with Contra Costa Clerk-Recorder Steve Weir, who said his office is still working through the roughly 50,000 mail ballots that were dropped off at the polls on Election Day. They’re hoping to finish that process by noon Saturday. After that, he said, they’ll have to count the “five percent of ballots that take as long as the first 95 percent.”

Here are the vote totals, updated about 4:45 p.m. Friday:

Orinda City Council

Candidate Percent Total votes
Amy Worth (i) 25.4 4,955
Dean Orr 20.1 3,952
Sue Severson (i) 20 3,903
Scott Zeller 17.9 3,486
Tom McCormick (i) 16 3,114

Orinda Union school board

Candidate Percent Total votes
Julie Rossiter 22.6 3,996
Christopher Severson 20.8 3,681
Tyson Krumholz 20.15 3,564
B. Van Voorhis-Gilbert 19.2 3,392
Sarah Butler 17.1 3,022

You can view updated vote totals for all Lamorinda and Contra Costa County races at the elections office website.

Posted on Friday, November 12th, 2010
Under: election, Orinda, Schools | 1 Comment »

ELECTION UPDATE: Severson’s lead grows to 303

The county has just released an updated vote total, but more ballots remain uncounted. The elections office said today they do not yet know if they will have another update later in the week.

In the Orinda council race, Sue Severson has increased her lead over Scott Zeller from 59 votes to 303.

Candidate Percent Total votes
Amy Worth (i) 25.37 4,297
Dean Orr 20.17 3,415
Sue Severson (i) 19.9 3,370
Scott Zeller 18.11 2,925
Tom McCormick (i) 16.16 2,737

The gap between third and fourth place has also widened in the school board race. Tyson Krumholz now leads Bekki Van Voorhis-Gilbert by 177 votes.

Candidate Percent Total votes
Julie Rossiter 27.5 3464
Christopher Severson 20.91 3,219
Tyson Krumholz 20.15 3,102
B. Van Voorhis-Gilbert 19 2,925
Sarah Butler 17.26 2,657

The results of the other four Lamorinda races have not changed. You can view the updated totals at the elections office website.

Posted on Wednesday, November 10th, 2010
Under: election, Orinda, Schools | No Comments »