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Council races attract crowd of candidates

Thirteen candidates may run for four Medford City Council races this November, and with Councilor Tim Jackle bowing out, five possible contenders have come forward for his Ward 1 seat.

“I am not running again,” Jackle said. “It’s been a good opportunity to serve people in this community, but it’s time.”

Jackle was appointed to replace former Councilor Al Densmore in 2013, and he ran for the seat in 2014.

The deadline for filing is Tuesday, Aug. 28, so more candidates could join the council races.

Potential candidates for Ward 1 include Curt Ankerberg, JulieAnne Simone, David Dobrin, Alex Poythress and Steve Dickson.

Ankerberg, who has tried 10 times since 2009 to be elected to various offices, was found to have filed fraudulent tax returns three years in a row by a U.S. Tax Court judge Jan. 8. He ran for the Senate District 3 primary in May and lost by 501 votes to Republican opponent Jessica Gomez.

All of the candidates for Ward 1 in northwest Medford have filed their paperwork and are collecting signatures, according to City Recorder Karen Spoonts.

Poythress is on the city Planning Commission and Dickson is on the Budget Committee.

Councilor Clay Bearnson said he plans to run again for Ward 2. Jim Hearndon has filled out the paperwork to run against Bearnson and is collecting signatures.

Councilor Mike Zarosinski, who plans to run again, may have a challenger for Ward 4 in southwest Medford. Lewis Severson picked up a filing packet from the city recorder but hasn’t filed yet.

Councilor Kevin Stine has completed the paperwork and had his 25 signatures verified to qualify for the ballot.

Glenda Wilson, who was city recorder for 16 years, plans to run against Stine. Wilson has completed the paperwork, and her signatures have been verified.

Other candidates who are still collecting signatures include John Peterson and Maria Gerolaga, though she has indicated to the city recorder that she may not run.

Stine is making his second run for the Ward 3 seat in northwest Medford.

“I figure what I’ve done in the past three-and-one-half years has made huge strides compared to where I started in 2014,” he said. “It hasn’t always been pretty.”

In 2015, the City Council fired former City Manager Eric Swanson during a public meeting, and the council had a rocky road trying to find a replacement.

Since then, Stine said, the city has accomplished a lot, such as building a new police headquarters and three new fire stations, bringing in Uber and Lyft, expanding the urban growth boundary, enacting laws to bring in marijuana business and dealing with abandoned properties.

As the chair of the Medford Urban Renewal Agency, Stine said urban renewal dollars will be invested in the Liberty Park neighborhood and to seismically retrofit downtown buildings.

Wilson, who works for Addictions Recovery Center, said her previous role as city recorder would give her a unique perspective on the council.

Reach reporter Damian Mann at 541-776-4476 or dmann@rosebudmedia.com. Follow him on www.twitter.com/reporterdm.

Thirteen candidates vie for Medord City Council. Mail Tribune file photo.