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Tuesday, December 11 , 2018, 8:34 am | Fair 42º


Bob Lingl Wins Re-Election in Lompoc Mayor Race

Lompoc Mayor Bob Lingl, middle, reacts with his supporters has the first set of results come in Tuesday night at D’Vine Wine Bar in Lompoc. Click to view larger
Lompoc Mayor Bob Lingl, middle, reacts with his supporters has the first set of results come in Tuesday night at D’Vine Wine Bar in Lompoc. (Daniel Dreifuss / Noozhawk photo)

Lompoc’s current mayor Bob Lingl won his bid for re-election in a match-up that mirrored the 2014 race, according to semi-official election night results.

Mayor Bob Lingl led the tally Tuesday night with 56.9 percent of the vote over current former mayor John Linn, who had with 42.7 percent, according to the County Elections Office.

For two seats on the City Council, challenger Jenelle Osborne won a seat by leading the candidates with 41.4 percent of the vote after all precincts were counted.

Incumbent Jim Mosby was in second place with 29.9 percent, narrowly trailed by incumbent DeWayne Holmdahl, with 28.2 percent.

Earlier in the night, a mere 28 votes separated the two before growing to a 217-vote difference after midnight 

Lingl and Linn faced off two years ago in a race focused on leadership style, with Lingl unseating the incumbent. 

In Lompoc, the mayor runs City Council meetings but doesn’t wield more power than the other four members. That’s because Lompoc, like other local cities, has a weak-mayor form of government that relies on professional staff to handle matters while the council sets policy.

However, supporters say Linn was a hands-on mayor, while his critics say he micromanaged city staff and had an overbearing leadership style.

The 2016 campaign saw Linn's supporters target Lingl in various ways, but the mayor said Tuesday's results show voters saw through those attacks including allegations he was in under criminal investigation.

"His campaign said a lot of things against me that were not true about my record and me personally," Lingl said, calling the false statements hurtful.

Results of Tuesday's election showed that character still matters to voters, Lingl added.

"It's not the size of your sign, it’s the size of your character," Lingl added.

Additionally, the proposed motorsports park has sparked division among the community as Linn is a strong supporter, leading the nonprofit foundation spearheading the project.

Meanwhile, Lingl has maintained that the project’s site, on Lompoc Airport land, is the wrong location for a motorsports park.

The same division exists among council candidates with Mosby, a former leader of the nonprofit foundation, supporting it while Osborne and Holmdahl also contending the location is wrong.

A newcomer, Osborne was leading candidates with two very familiar names in the community.

"I am amazed and appreciative of such a strong response to my first endeavor to run for council," Osborne said. "I’m just so grateful to the community for the support and I really want to help move Lompoc forward."

Mosby has served on the City Council since December 2014, when he was appointed to fill the vacancy created by Lingl’s win as mayor.

Holmdahl has a long record of public service, including serving on the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors in the 1980s. 

More recently, he was elected to the City Council in 2012 after previously serving three terms on the council from 1996 to 2008.

Osborne is a relative newcomer to city politics, but has been member of the Lompoc Economic Development Committee. 

Comments she made a week ago calling into question key aspects to the motorsports park environmental impact report prompted the consultants and city staff to say parts of the document needed to be recirculated before the City Council could consider certifying the EIR.

The winners of the two-year mayoral term and the four-year council terms reportedly will be sworn in during the Dec. 20 council meeting.

The remaining members of the City Council are Victor Vega and Dirk Starbuck, who are in the middle of their four-year terms.

Noozhawk North County editor Janene Scully can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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