Tuesday, September 27 , 2016, 5:08 am | Fair 65º

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Local News

Peter Adam Wins 4th District Santa Barbara County Supervisor Race

Joni Gray, incumbent 4th District county supervisor, shares a laugh with family and friends while waiting for election returns at her Orcutt home Tuesday night (Gina Potthoff / Noozhawk photo)
Joni Gray, incumbent 4th District county supervisor, shares a laugh with family and friends while waiting for election returns at her Orcutt home Tuesday night (Gina Potthoff / Noozhawk photo)

Political newcomer Peter Adam has unseated incumbent Joni Gray in a hard-fought race for the Fourth District spot on the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors.

With all 50 precincts reporting by midnight Tuesday, Adam came out on top with 51 percent of the vote to 48.6 for Gray.

After Gray took an early lead — ahead by just 32 votes at one point — Adam moved ahead to a final 504 votes out of 21,216 cast.

Gray, a political veteran and Orcutt resident, and Adam, a Santa Maria farmer, were pushed into a runoff after the June primary.The two were the top vote-getters but neither earned more than 50 percent of the vote for an outright election.

Primary results showed that Gray garnered 39.7 percent of the June vote, compared to 37.7 percent for Adam. Former Lompoc Mayor Joyce Howerton was a distant third.

After redistricting last year, the Fourth District includes Lompoc, the unincorporated community of Orcutt and a small part of Santa Maria.

Adam celebrated with supporters as the returns came in Tuesday at the Far Western Tavern in Old Town Orcutt—less than three miles from Gray’s Orcutt residence where she waited for results with friends and family.

Both candidates had been glued to computer screens throughout the night in a race they both dubbed “too close.”

Adam will be seated on the five-member board in January.

Noozhawk staff writer Gina Potthoff 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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