San Juan Bautista voters elected two new councilman Tuesday, with the top two vote-getters being newcomers Jim West and Chris Martorana, who earned 24 and 23 percent of the vote, respectively. Incumbent Tony Boch retained his seat by earning 22 percent of the vote, well ahead of Ray Sanchez (12 percent) and former Councilwoman Maggie Bilich (11 percent.)
Sanchez chose to withdraw from the race, but not early enough that his name would not appear on the ballot. San Benito County Planning Commissioner and local attorney, Dan DeVries, entered the race on Friday as a write-in candidate. Eight percent of voters added a write-in choice, though who they wrote in is not known at this point.
Boch said he ran again because he “felt there is still a lot of work to do in San Juan. The city needs to finish the water infrastructure system.” He said there are plans to re-apply for a Community Development Block Grant to fund the completion of the project, this time with a little more knowledge about the process.
He said Martorana and West are "both very involved in San Juan and care a lot about it. A few years ago, they wouldn’t have been given a chance, as newcomers to San Juan.”
He said he was glad that it looks as though they may be given the opportunity to serve together.
West said, "I just want to thank all the people who voted in this election."