Editor’s note: This piece was originally published prior to the deadline for candidates to file. The list below has now been updated to include all candidates running.

Sept. 24: Changes were made to reflect the proper incumbents for the North Tahoe Public Utility District.

With everything else 2020 has had to offer, the General Election is still on. Following is a quick overview of what’s happening on a national, statewide, and local level. Think of it as CliffsNotes Lite — aka, please still do your homework!


Let’s get into it.

All Californians eligible to vote will receive a vote-by-mail ballot prior to the Nov. 3 election. This mail option is in addition to in-person voting locations. Nevada, too, plans to stick to the same vote-by-mail process used for the Primary Election, meaning those registered will receive a mail-in ballot, though a number of live voting locations will also exist. Finalized voter information guides will be available for both Nevada and California residents in the fall, listing out statewide propositions to be decided on in the voter booth.

Propositions to appear on the California ballot include increased funding for public schools K-12; allowing diversity as a consideration for employment, education, and contract decisions; and restoring the right to vote after a completed prison term.

In Nevada, proposed petitions include an increase in the Local School Support Tax, from 8.32% to 9.73%; a change to Nevada’s Primary Election process, allowing voters to select candidates from any party regardless of the voter’s affiliation; and prohibiting physicians from knowingly performing abortions on minors unless a parent/guardian is notified or a Nevada court authorizes the action.

But now, a deeper dive on a local level. First is a look at key races in the region, followed by important decisions facing local registered voters via ballot measures. A chart at the bottom shows electable positions and current candidates (as of press deadline) that will appear on North Tahoe/Truckee ballots for the 2020 General Election.

Key points for key races

United States Congress, 4th District: Tom McClintock (R) has represented California’s 4th district in the U.S. House since 2009. During President Donald Drumpf’s tenure, McClintock has aligned his votes with Drumpf 87.9% of the time. In November, McClintock will go head-to-head against businesswoman Brynne Kennedy (D), whom he led in March’s Primary Election by roughly 30,000 votes (in total, 278,350 votes were cast for District 4 — 141,244 of which were for McClintock).

In a May survey performed by Lake Research Partners, the findings of which were published in late July, there was a “statistical dead heat in the race between” Kennedy and McClintock.

Both candidates have begun releasing ads for the November election. Key issues between the two include McClintock’s response to the COVID pandemic, which Kennedy has criticized; as well as healthcare and social security approaches. Kennedy’s campaign website, which includes a rundown of her priorities, is brynneforcongress.com.

McClintock’s campaign manager, Jon Huey, referred to a past social media post by Kennedy, stating she “misses authoritarian governments.” Other issues close to McClintock’s heart include economic growth, illegal immigration, and forest/water policies.

In his response to his Primary Election victory, McClintock pointed to the 4th District as “a beacon of hope against the socialist policies that are destroying California and threatening our nation.” McClintock’s own campaign efforts can be tracked at tommcclintock.com.

Truckee/North Lake Tahoe: There are a number of elections throughout the region that will shake up what representation there currently is.

Three spots are up for grabs within the Town of Truckee’s council of five. Not only will the majority of seats be competed for, but those victorious will play a role in the planning of the 2040 general plan and climate change action plan, as well as guidance of a new town manager and police chief.

Two other contested elections are also on the docket come press deadline: the Incline Village General Improvement District and the Truckee Tahoe Airport District.

Notable topics revolving around the airport district include increased air traffic, noise issues, and a considerable amount of discretionary funds as part of its healthy budget.

The IVGID, Incline Village’s quasi-town government, recently confirmed the appointment of Indra Winquest as its general manager on July 1. The new board members will help guide Winquest in his position.

A candidate forum for those competing in the region will be televised live from the Truckee town council chambers Sept. 9 and 10 at 6 p.m. In light of the pandemic, only candidates will be allowed to attend. More information will be provided as the forum draws closer.

Washoe County: Many Nevada offices up for vote will appear on Washoe County resident ballots, including United States Congress, 2nd District; Reno and Sparks city council spots; and district nonpartisan positions. For a full run-down of Washoe/Nevada offices up for election, visit washoecounty.us/voters/elections.

Ballot Measures

We teased a few state measures earlier and will focus on local actions below. To review statewide propositions for California, visit sos.ca.gov/elections/election-2020; for Nevada, see nvsos.gov/sos/elections/initiatives-referenda/2020-petitions.

Increasing Truckee’s TOT
On June 23, Truckee’s town council voted to place an option to increase the transient occupancy tax, aka hotel tax, by 2% on the November ballot. The proposed measure won’t raise taxes for residents, but for overnight hotel and short-term rental guests. Approximately $700,000 would come from this measure annually.

If approved by voters, the amassed funds will go toward workforce housing, wildfire preparation, and open space protection. More information on the potential funding is found at townoftruckee.com/government/town-manager/measure-k

This measure is the only Nevada County ballot measure affecting Truckee/North Tahoe residents.

Changing up the charter
Placer County’s charter, established in 1980, functions similarly to a constitution — it guides the organization and duties of elected and appointed officials. The current board of supervisors adopted and placed four changes on the November ballot. The updates, listed below, were suggested by a charter review committee.

1. All county elected officials must reside in Placer County, not just the supervisors, as is currently allowed. As of now, elected officers are required by law to be registered county voters at the time of appointment, but continued residency after that point is not mandatory.

2. The county’s civil service commission’s administrative and hearing duties would be split, with the admin duties moving to the human resources department. This change would pull technical and routine responsibilities and narrow the commission’s focus to resolving grievances and other personnel hearings.

3. Board supervisors need not approve appointments of nonelected department heads by the county executive officer.

4. Outdated procurement bid thresholds no longer consistent with state law will be stricken.

Each proposed measure simply requires a majority of the vote to pass. A full breakdown of these proposed changes, as reported by the charter review committee, can be found at placer.ca.gov/DocumentCenter/View/44540/06A.

There are nine additional measures for Placer County residents residing in Roseville and one for Auburn. A complete list of submitted measures can be found at placerelections.com/current-elections, under press releases and election notices, then notice of election.

El Dorado’s N, P, Q, R, S
El Dorado County has, to date, five measures on its November ballot, most of which revolve around upping special taxes. One, for example, in the city of South Lake Tahoe looks to establish a 1-cent sales tax to maintain a number of city services in the city. The others take place in El Dorado Hills, Cameron Park, and Placerville. The last measure is countywide and looks at the process of appointing a city treasurer.

Washoe County
The Reno, Sparks, and greater Truckee Meadows area will know which measures are to appear on the Washoe County ballot once the deadline date has passed, to happen the second week of August, after publication date.


Seats Available


New Term Begins


Donner Summit Public Utility District

Robert Sherwood*

Cathy Preis*

3 4-year Dec. 4, 2020
El Dorado County Board of Education

Richard Fischer*

2 4-year Dec. 11, 2020
Incline Village General Improvement District (contested)

Matthew Dent*

Blane Johnson

Yolanda Knaak

Sara Schmitz*

Michaela Tonking

Frank Wright

3 4-year Jan. 1, 2021
Nevada County Board of Education (contested)

Louise B. Johnson (2-year)*

Susan Clarabut (2-year)*

Peggy Delgado Fava (2-year)

J. Timothy May (4-year)

Ashley V. Neumann (4-year)

4 (2) 2- or (2) 4-year Dec. 11 2020
North Lake Tahoe Fire Protection District

James Costalupes*

Susan Herron*

Greg McKay*

3 4-year Jan. 4, 2021
North Tahoe Fire Protection District

Michael Baffone*

Dennis Correa*

3 4-year Dec. 4, 2020
North Tahoe Public Utility District

Phil Thompson*

Sarah Coolidge*

Tim Ferrell*

Danielle Hughes

3 4-year Dec. 4, 2020
Northstar Community Services District

Michael Witherspoon

Warren “Chip” Brown

3 2- or 4-year Dec. 4, 2020
Placer County Board of Education (contested)

Rene Aguilera

Susan Goto*

Kelli Gnile*

David Patterson*

Lynn Oliver*

4 4-year Dec. 11, 2020
Squaw Valley Public Service District

Katy Hover-Smoot*

Fred Ilfeld*

3 4-year Dec. 4, 2020
Tahoe City Public Utility District

Judy Friedman*

Dan Wilkins*

Elleyne “Ellie” Beals

3 4-year Dec. 4, 2020
Tahoe Forest Hospital District

Alyce Wong*

Art King*

Michael C. McGarry* (2-year)

3 (1) 2- or (2) 4-year Dec. 4, 2020
Tahoe Truckee Unified School District

Kristen Livak*

Christina Hennessey*

2 4-year Dec. 11, 2020
Town of Truckee Council

Jan Zabriskie (2-year)

Carla Embertson (2-year)

Courtney Henderson (4-year)

Lindsay Romack (4-year)

Dow Costa (4-year)

Marcy Dolan (4-year)

John “Jack” Forbes (4-year)

Frank J. Bernhard (4-year)

Nicholas J. Sielchan (4-year)

3 (1) 2- or (2) 4-year Dec. 8, 2020
Truckee Donner Public Utility District

Jeff Bender*

Kimberly Harris

Cathy Stewart

Joseph R Arguera*

Bob Ellis*

3 4-year Dec. 4, 2020
Truckee Donner Recreation and Park District (contested)

Jason Hansford*

Lori Marquette

Mark Tanner*

2 4-year Dec. 4, 2020
Truckee Fire Protection District

Erin Prado*

Gerald Herrick*

2 4-year Dec. 4, 2020
Truckee Sanitary District

Dennis Anderson*

Brian K. Smart*

2 4-year Dec. 4, 2020
Truckee Tahoe Airport District (contested)

Rick Stephens*

David Diamond

Leigh Golden

Ken Aronson

Teresa O’Dette*

3 4-year Dec. 4, 2020


State Senate, 1st District

Brian Dahle (R)*

Pamela Swartz (D)

1 4-year Dec. 7, 2020
State Assembly, 1st District

Megan Dahle (R)*

Elizabeth Betancourt (D)

1 2-year Dec. 7, 2020
State Assembly, 5th District

Frank Bigelow (R)* (unopposed)

1 2-year Dec. 7, 2020


United States Congress, 1st District

Doug LaMalfa (R)*

Audrey Denney (D)

1 2-year Jan. 3, 2021
United States Congress, 4th District

Tom McClintock (R)*

Brynne Kennedy (D)

1 2-year Jan. 3, 2021
President of the United States

Donald Trump (R)*

Joe Biden (D)

1 4-year Jan. 20, 2021



  • Alex Hoeft

    Alex Hoeft joined Moonshine staff in May 2019, happy to return to the world of journalism after a few years in community outreach. She has both her bachelor's and Master's in journalism, from Brigham Young University and University of Nevada, Reno, respectively. When she's not journalism-ing, she's wrangling her toddler or reading a book — or doing both at the same time.

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