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Updated 9:45 a.m., Nov. 14–
Sentinel staff report–
The race for three seats on the Citrus Heights City Council appears to be decided, after more results were released by elections officials on Friday afternoon.
Porsche Middleton, who currently serves as a Citrus Heights Planning Commissioner, pulled ahead by several hundred more votes to solidify her place in third, earning her a seat on the City Council along with Mayor Steve Miller and Vice Mayor Jeannie Bruins, who both won their campaigns for re-election.
Al Fox, who was appointed to the City Council following the death of Councilman Mel Turner in 2017, told The Sentinel he won’t be conceding until the final results are posted, which will happen before the election is certified on Dec. 6th. He and Middleton are separated by about 900 votes, or 2%, as of the latest vote count.
“I think there’s no question that Steve and Jeannie are re-elected. There’s no question about that. I think that the split between Porsche and I will probably remain the same,” said Fox. “I obviously didn’t get the votes I hoped for, but I’m very pleased with how things went.”
Middleton told The Sentinel on Saturday that “[w]hile every ballot has not yet been counted, it would seem that I have a solid position in third place and will be a Citrus Heights City Councilmember.” She said her focus over the next four years will be on business development, maintaining fiscal integrity, and “working closely with the County to develop more effective solutions to help the homeless individuals within our community.”
The 34-year-old had picked up endorsements from elected officials and organizations around the region, including The Sacramento Bee, the Sacramento County Democratic Party, and the Sacramento Association of Realtors. She was also the top fundraiser of the five candidates running — reporting close to $50,000 in total campaign contributions, nearly five times more contributions than Mayor Miller reported receiving.
Candidate Treston Shull, who came in second for fundraising but placed last in the race with about 12% of the vote, told The Sentinel in an email on Friday that he wished the best for the three candidates who won election to the council. “While I was looking for different results, I ran to help make my city better — I will continue to do that, just not as a member of the City Council,” he said.
The latest vote count shows Bruins holding her lead with 27% of the vote, Miller with 21%, Middleton with 20%, and Fox receiving 18% of the vote. Each candidate’s percentages have held steadily each time Sacramento County elections officials have released more results. Additional vote count updates are scheduled to be released each Tuesday and Friday, until election results are officially certified next month.
Update: Additional results released by elections officials on Nov. 13 show all candidates holding the same percentages, with 40,376 total votes now counted in the race. Countywide, officials estimate an additional 94,500 ballots are still waiting to be processed.
Miller and Bruins both told The Sentinel they were pleased with their re-election and look forward to serving another four years. Miller will be serving his fourth term on the City Council and Bruins will be serving her fifth term, having been on the council since 2002. Both have said one of their goals for their next term will be working to improve schools in the city, including the possibility of bringing a charter school to Citrus Heights.
Councilman Bret Daniels, who had endorsed Middleton and is often a lone “no” vote among his colleagues on the council, told The Sentinel he is looking forward to serving with her.
“I think she’ll bring a fresh energetic voice and a perspective that we do not have on the council now,” said Daniels in a phone interview. “I think what we don’t have is a younger voice and a willingness to not just be a head-nod to what staff wants.”
Middleton is slated to take her new seat as a member of the City Council next month.
See where Middleton stands on nine local issues: Porsche Middleton on the issues, in her own words
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