Somerton mayor, one council member win re-election
Somerton Mayor Martin Porchas and City Councilman Gerardo Anaya have won new terms of office, according to unofficial final returns from Tuesday's primary election.
Porchas, seeking his second four-year term, received 542 votes, compared with 362 for his opponent, Arturo Magana, according to returns.
Anaya won a new term by receiving votes from more than half of all Somerton voters who took part in the primary election.
Four other candidates — incumbent Miguel Villalpando, Carlos Gonzalez, Arturo Vargas and Patricia Miranda — will compete for two remaining open seats on the city council in a runoff in the city's general election in May. Francisco Vasquez, who received 151 votes, the lowest total among the six council candidates, was eliminated from further contention.
Of 4,283 registered voters, 951 — or 22 percent — voted in the primary.
According to unofficial returns, Anaya received 527 votes, followed by Villalpando with 432, Gonzalez with 428, Vargas with 313 and Miranda with 312. Returns become final once canvassed by the Somerton City Council.
The mayoral race had turned into a referendum over the city's recycling and animal control programs, with Magana challenging the cost-effectiveness of both in his campaign and Porchas defending them.
“The people saw what we have done and that is reflected in the vote,” Porchas said. “I am ready to continue working 100 percent and more.”
Magana, the city's vice mayor, also is concluding his council term this year. Rather than seek another council term Tuesday, he chose to challenge Porchas.
“I thought that race would be closer because a lot of people who went to vote Tuesday were my supporters,” Magana said. “I think that Martin's advantage is mainly the early ballots.”