June Primary to cost millions of dollars

County Supervisors expected to approve money for election

Riverside - The Riverside County Board of Supervisors is expected tomorrow to authorize $2.5 million to cover costs for the upcoming June primary election.

Interim Registrar of Voters Rebecca Spencer submitted a request on the board's consent agenda seeking approval of a resolution to move ahead with lining up resources for the June 3 primary. Spencer said the county will be on the hook for $1.6 million, while the various municipalities served by the Registrar of Voters Office will foot the balance of the bill.

According to Spencer, the county's allotment has already been budgeted in the current fiscal year.

Nearly three-dozen local, state and federal seats are up for grabs, though Auditor-Controller Paul Angulo and Treasurer-Tax Collector Don Kent are running unopposed, while in the assessor-clerk-recorder's race, Assistant Assessor Peter Aldana is the sole candidate.

Other county races, however, have multiple candidates.

Supervisor Marion Ashley is fending off a challenge from educator Mark Orozco, while Supervisor John Benoit is fighting to protect his seat from termed-out Assemblyman V. Manual Perez, and Supervisor John Tavaglione is being opposed by 30-year area teacher Arthur Gonzales.

District Attorney Paul Zellerbach's attempt to win a second term is under threat from veteran capital homicide prosecutor Mike Hestrin, whose grassroots campaign has been active for more than a year.

Sheriff Stan Sniff is facing a challenge from a subordinate -- sheriff's Lt. Chad Bianco. Sniff was appointed to fill the vacancy left following the resignation in 2007 of then-Sheriff Bob Doyle. Sniff was elected to his first term in 2010.

County Superintendent of Schools Kenneth Young was also appointed to office in 2007 and elected to his first term in 2010. He's being challenged by longtime teacher Michael Scott.

Two Superior Court judicial seats are on the line, as well as three county Board of Education seats.

The primary includes a recall election in Moreno Valley, where voters will be asked whether Mayor Tom Owings should be permitted to keep his job.

Concerned Citizens for Moreno Valley began calling for Owings' ouster last year, after a state and federal investigation was opened into alleged corruption at Moreno Valley City Hall.

The probe led to federal and state charges against ex-Councilman Marcelo Co, who pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in January to accepting bribes.

Owing has not been charged and has expressed confidence he'll remain in office. If he doesn't, the recall ballot asks voters to choose one of six potential replacements.  

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