Board elections are under way for the school district in Portola Valley, the fire protection district that serves Menlo Park, Atherton, East Palo Alto and nearby unincorporated neighborhoods, and the water district for the Los Trancos Woods and Vista Verde neighborhoods.
Each district has three candidates running for two board seats, according to the San Mateo County Registrar of Voters.
The lists of candidates in most local races were settled Friday, Aug. 10, but for contests in which an incumbent chose not to run for re-election, the deadline was extended to 5 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 15.
Write-in candidates can still join the races. Write-in candidates for public office have between Sept. 10 and Oct. 23 to obtain and file nomination forms, according to a 2007 candidate handbook at the Web site of the San Mateo County Registrar of Voters.
Unless otherwise noted, all offices are for four-year terms.
While there are four candidates running for four seats on the Woodside Town Council, an election could still be held. The council will decide at an Aug. 22 special meeting whether to appoint the candidates or hold an election and allow for the possibility of write-in candidates.
The school board for the Woodside Elementary School District is likely to appoint incumbent Ellen Ablow and newcomer Virginia Bamford, neither of whom has competition in their bids for seats on the board.
Ms. Bamford filed her candidacy papers Wednesday, the last day to do so. The filing period had been extended because incumbent board president Kimberley McMorrow chose not to run for re-election.
In the Portola Valley Elementary School District, an election is ahead for the three residents vying for two available seats. The candidates are Steven Humphreys, Judith Ann Mendelsohn and Brad Turner.
For the two seats on the Portola Valley Town Council, the candidates are incumbent Councilman Steve Toben and Planning Commission Chair Ann Wengert, said Town Administrator Angela Howard. The council is likely to appoint them rather than have an election, Ms. Howard said.
In Ladera, candidates for two seats on the Ladera Recreation District board are high school teacher and resident Peter Caryotakis and resident Karen Fryling. They may be appointed.
Menlo fire board
The race is on in the Menlo Park Fire Protection District, with three candidates vying for two open seats.
Incumbents Bart Spencer and John Osmer filed candidate papers early on, but Peter Ohtaki, who works for a nonprofit focused on security issues, filed papers on the last possible day, Aug. 10.
Mr. Ohtaki, 46, grew up in Menlo Park, attending local schools. He returned to town only recently after living in San Francisco and Belmont for a number of years. He was appointed to the Mid-Peninsula Water District (Belmont) board of directors in 2006, but recently resigned his seat after moving from that district.
He hasn't attended fire district board meetings, but has been trained in the district's Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program, he said.
He's the Bay Area regional director of Business Executives for National Security, a national organization made up of business leaders focusing on national security issues.
Bart Spencer, who has had a long career in emergency services, including as a firefighter/paramedic, is running for his third four-year term on the board. He works with the San Mateo County Office of Emergency Services, and is a Menlo Park resident.
Mr. Osmer is running for his second term on the board. A Menlo Park resident, he is employed by Solectron Corp., a global electronics manufacturing and services company. His career has included a stint as a congressional aide in Washington, D.C.
In the Los Trancos County Water District, an election is on for the two board seats sought by three candidates.
Incumbent Charles Krenz is running for re-election. The two other candidates are Richard Swan, listed by the registrar's office as a founder of a software company, and Mike Ward, who is listed as a community volunteer.
On the board of the Sequoia Union High School District, incumbents Olivia Martinez, Don Gibson and Lorraine Rumley are unopposed and likely will be re-appointed.
On the board of the West Bay Sanitary District, incumbents John B. Lomax, Ronald W. Shepherd and David Alexander Walker, all from Menlo Park, will likely be re-appointed.
Incumbents Dave Mandelkern of Burlingame and Karen Schwarz and Patricia Miljanich, both of Redwood City, will likely be re-appointed to the board of the San Mateo County Community College District.
For the Skyline County Water District, appointments to the board are likely for incumbent John A. Jahraus and heavy equipment operator Dan Cissell.