Paso nomination period starts Monday

July 11, 2012

Candidates for Paso Robles mayor, two open seats on the city council, and the offices of treasurer and city clerk can obtain nomination papers beginning Monday for the November 6 election, marking the beginning of what many are predicting will be a vigorous campaign season.

The nomination period extends through August 10. (More details here.)

Positions now occupied by Mayor Duane Picanco and council members Fred Strong and Nick Gilman will be open. Picanco has said he plans to run for another two-year term. Gilman hinted recently that he might not seek reelection. Papers must by picked up in person by making an appointment with the city clerk’s office.

City Clerk Dennis Fansler and Treasurer Michael Compton also face the voters.

Paso Robles’ government has been under intense scrutiny over past months, with residents voicing concern over crumbling streets, a decimated police force, disintegrating infrastructure, and what is widely perceived as an unfriendly environment in city hall.

The council’s handling of the recent scandal involving former chief of police Lisa Solomon-Chitty also has been under fire from voters, critical of the city’s payment to her of $250,000 upon her forced departure.

Circumstances led to formation of a citizens’ action group, Change Paso Robles Now, or CPRN2012.

That group’s chairperson, Karen Daniels, said Tuesday that the upcoming election offers the chance for “change and hope for fiscal health of the city.”

“We are firm in our commitment to bring change to Paso Robles,” said Daniels. “There is an acute need for qualified candidates whose interest on behalf of the citizenry outweigh their own political ambitions. It has become apparent that the people of Paso Robles have been awakened to serious fiscal irresponsibility by the current leadership.

“CPRN2012 is issuing a call to action by voters to bring change to the key positions of power in city government. We encourage all who feel the call to serve to make their candidacy known by observing the candidates’ filing period.”

Daniels said CPRN2012 will be promoting interactive meetings between candidates and community members by sponsoring at least one candidates’ forum/debate. 

— By Daniel Blackburn



  1. JB Bronson says:

    In no particular order, wouldn’t the list of desirable candidate qualities include: 1) Willing to make the City Manager an elected position. 2) Willing to disclose the details of the investigation into Police Chief behavior, paid for with tax payer dollars. 3)…

    (3) 5 Total Votes - 4 up - 1 down
  2. Paso_citizen says:

    Picanco has said he will run for re-election as this city’s mayor. I am sure he thinks he has several
    excellant reasons to believe he is the best, but you should all know the following:

    At the July 3, 2012 City Council meeting, Mayor Duane Picanco said, with as much passion as he could muster, that he was AGAINST the Supplemental Sales Tax Ordinance that will be on the November ballot. Please listen to tape of meeting, if there is any doubt. He was the only one that voted against it being written as a general sales tax. That took some guts and for that action, Mayor Picanco deserves some kudos.

    But, will Mr. Picanco steadfastly remain AGAINST this general sales tax increase and will he actively campaign AGAINST it. Or, as he has done on other issues, decide that he is now FOR the general sales tax. Getting my vote, and hopefully getting others votes, will highly depend on just how Mayor
    Picanco handles this general sales tax ordinance. He needs to be very outspoken and passionently
    AGAINST it -just as was at the city council meeting.

    This added sales tax will allow the city council and city manager to use the money for whatever they deem necessary, despite promises to the contrary. There’s an old saying : Promises + $1.00 will get you exactly $1.00. This is especially true with promises from city officials. They have shown on multiple occasions that their promises often have no weight.

    So, Mr Picanco, the onus is on you.

    (4) 4 Total Votes - 4 up - 0 down
    • OldNed says:

      Even if Picanco is against a sales tax increase, anyone who thinks this one issue is enough to justify voting for his re-election given his history is nuts. If the sale tax increase is an important issue to you, I hope you will be able to find a more qualified candidate.

      (8) 8 Total Votes - 8 up - 0 down
      • Paso_citizen says:

        My bad. My humble attempt at sarcasm went right over (or under or around) you and Cindy.
        I will try again. My belief is that Mr. Picanco will NOT actively campaign against the sales tax, and may even be for it – even after being against it, before which he was for it.
        The point being that he will then wonder in open awe why citizens don’t trust their city government, as he yo-yo’s back and forth on this issue – same as he has on other issues.
        Trust is earned by strong leadership and being consistent – not changing just to please one side or the other. Has, and had, nothing to do with a Karl Rove tactic – maybe a Chuck Colson
        comment concerning how to get people to do as you want.

        (2) 2 Total Votes - 2 up - 0 down
    • Cindy says:

      Who cares if Picanco is for or against the sales tax? It is up to the voters and he knows that nobody is willing to give those clowns any more money. Oh, how easily you’re swayed and it doesn’t even take a Karl Rove tactic.

      (4) 4 Total Votes - 4 up - 0 down
  3. OldNed says:

    If Picanco and Strong are re-elected, this city is beyond hope. I’d run for one of the spots but that would mean quitting my job and I simply can’t afford to do that. However, I’ll do what I can short of that to empty the clown car of its current passengers.

    (21) 21 Total Votes - 21 up - 0 down
    • danika says:

      OldNed, CPRN2012 is now working aggressively toward that common goal. Please go to our website: and register, if you have not already done so. We have lots to do and are ready to do what must be done. We need all the support and assistance we can get. Thank YOU!

      (9) 11 Total Votes - 10 up - 1 down
  4. SLOBIRD says:

    If the City Clerk and Treasurer have to run on their merit, I definitely think the City Manager should be an elected position. How can we make that happen? Put in a new Council/Mayer, change the position of manager effective next election and let Mr. Apps campaign on his worth to the community, Should be a very interesting campaign!

    (20) 26 Total Votes - 23 up - 3 down
    • Cindy says:

      It’s a VERY BAD idea to elect a city manager. He will end up with too much power and no one to answer to. No one can terminate an elected city manager and he either has to be recalled or voted out of office during an election. Concentrate on electing a competent, honest city council and leave the city council to firing and hiring a city manager. Any CC candidate that is not open to taking App to task and openly reviewing the accomplishments, directives and effective skill sets put forth through the city managers office over the last few years is not worth voting for. App has to go and to accomplish that end………

      ………………………….All three incumbents have to GO, in my opinion.

      (6) 6 Total Votes - 6 up - 0 down
  5. Spirit Filled says:

    Make me a write in will you? My kids, grandkids and great-grandkids think I can be a great mayor or any of those jobs available. Right after they told grandma that they ask me if I I could give them a loan. I never loan I give, they know that. No paybacks, makes me nervous.

    Blessings to you and yours. I hope no one runs for mayor, I want it.

    (-1) 9 Total Votes - 4 up - 5 down
    • danika says:

      Why not just make it official and run for Mayor or City Council?

      (11) 11 Total Votes - 11 up - 0 down
      • Spirit Filled says:

        Can’t afford the fee to apply.

        (-1) 3 Total Votes - 1 up - 2 down
        • danika says:

          Spirit Filled. CPRN2012 does not sponsor or support ANY candidates but we certainly can refer all interested persons to those parties wishing to offer financial assistance. Email me at for more info.

          (1) 1 Total Votes - 1 up - 0 down

Comments are closed.