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TID Board candidates share mutual concerns

POSTED August 9, 2013 8:44 p.m.

The Turlock Irrigation District Board of Directors will look eerily similar come 2014, as the filing period ended for the Nov. 5 elections on Friday and only the incumbents filed candidacy papers. Current directors Ron Macedo, Joe Alamo and Charles Fernandes will all be running as incumbents for their respective divisions.

Although the divisions are different for these uncontested board members, their future concerns are not.

Their top concern? Relicensing the Don Pedro Reservoir.

Fernandes, who was elected to the board in 2001, said the relicensure of the dam will be the number one concern facing the board. If elected, he hopes his experience with the district will help serve to find a solution to ongoing water problems.

“In a low water year, it’s going to make allocating water that much more difficult,” said Fernandes. “We’re going to need to have long-term goals to address the situation.” 

He also stated that he’s been in support of more controversial projects, like the Tuolumne Wind Project Authority. Fernandes said the project has helped the district as a whole reach future alternative energy goals and that it was a testament of good decision making by the entirety of the board.

“There really are no quick fixes to anything,” said Fernandes. “We’ve done a lot of things right, and we need to move slow and look to the future.”

Alamo, who is finishing up his first term on the board, is also looking to reclaim his seat. He stated that his first term has definitely been a learning experience.

“The TID is an intricate business and there really is a lot to know,” said Alamo. “But I do believe that I have a lot to offer.”

Alamo stated that if elected, one of his major goals will be guaranteeing the district's rights to the Tuolumne River.

Macedo, the final of the three candidates seeking reelection to the board, echoed the concerns of both Alamo and Fernandes. He stated that if elected, he hopes to continue to share the message on how important the Don Pedro water is to Turlock irrigators.

“I think the best thing we can do as a board is to continue to show how this dam is so important to this community,” said Macedo.

Macedo, who comes from an extensive agriculture background, stated that there was a learning curve when he was first elected to his seat, despite his prior experiences.

“I thought I was well versed, but things are always changing and shifting,” he said.

Macedo also applauded the efforts of the board, and stated that he’s “enjoyed every minute of it.”

“If I’ve learned anything, it’s how strong of an organization TID really is.”

For information on how to register to vote, visit www.stanvote.com.

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