Long-time Humboldt Community Services District Director Alan Bongio has lost his bid to keep the board seat he's held for 24 years.
In the final Election Night tally, Bongio finished with 27.55 percent of the 4,174 ballots counted thus far, trailing fellow incumbent Gregg Gardiner and challenger Julie M. Ryan, who finished with 39.55 percent and 32.89 percent, respectively, taking the two open seats in the race.
While thousands of votes remain to be counted countywide, barring a statistical anomaly, Bongio will not be able to make up the 223 votes he currently needs to catch Ryan and retain his seat.
Long-time Humboldt Community Services District director Alan Bongio looks to be in danger of losing his board seat amid an ongoing controversy in his role as a Humboldt County planning commissioner.
In the first election night report — comprised entirely of early votes and vote-by-mail ballots that arrived at the Election's Office prior to today — incumbent Gregg Gardiner and challenger Julie Ryan lead the race for two seats on the HCSD board, with 40.44 percent and 34.22 percent of the vote, respectively. Bongio trails with 25.34 percent of the 1,961 votes counted thus far.
Bongio — who has served on the district's board for 24 years after taking over for his father, Aldo Bongio, who held the post for 34 years — drew widespread criticism in his role as chair of the Humboldt County Planning Commission in August, when his handling of a local developer's permit application left fellow commissioners apologizing for his conduct
, calling it "biased" and "racist," and officials from two local tribes deeply offended by his treatment of them. Bongio's conduct drew a rare unanimous censure
from the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors, his stepping down as the commission's chair and two unsuccessful
votes to remove him as the HCSD board president.
Check back first thing tomorrow morning for full election night results.