District three incumbent Dave Roberts will face challenger Encinitas Mayor Kristin Gaspar in a runoff election this November in the San Diego County Board of Supervisor's Race.
“The early returns are showing that our message did resonate with the voters, and they want me to continue serving as their county supervisor for another four years,” Roberts said Tuesday evening as election results started to come in.
Roberts, a Democrat in a Republican leaning district, faced off against two Republicans in the race and received a 39 percent plurality. A candidate must receive a majority of the vote to avoid a runoff.
Gaspar, a Republican, received 5,197 more votes than fellow Republican challenger Escondido Mayor Sam Abed, despite the County Republican Party donating $25,000 to Abed’s campaign, the most allowed under a new county law.
Gasper said she was pleased with the returns Tuesday evening. “I think it’s really important that the voters have taken note of the behavior of supervisor Roberts. It’s been a long time since there’s been a competitive race in district three,” she told NBC 7.
Both Gaspar and Abed announced their election bids amid legal claims alleging Roberts misappropriated funds and mistreated employees during his time in office.
In September 2015, the county agreed to pay over $300,000 to settle claims filed by former employees of the supervisor.
Although the District Attorney declined to file charges against Roberts in April, eight employees left his office during the investigation.
Last year Abed said on NBC 7’s Politically Speaking that Roberts “violated the public trust,” and was quick to point out the scandal Roberts found himself in when he announced his bid for the County Supervisor seat last June.
At the time Abed said, “The trust with the county residents and the broken relationship with the County Board of Supervisors and staff will never be restored under Supervisor Roberts.”
Gaspar told NBC 7 the scandal created a “distraction for the county” and trust needed to be restored.
Gaspar, elected in 2014, announced her bid last August.
“I made the decision to seek the 3rd District seat because I want to play a more active role in the important investments we need to make in our roads, infrastructure, and core county services. My experience in a private sector company and as an elected official has prepared me to work successfully with the group of Supervisors representing diverse districts,” Gaspar said last summer.
Gasper has served as president of the San Dieguito Water District Board and was elected to the Encinitas City Council in 2010.
With 100 percent of the results in Roberts had 39 percent of the vote (32,663 votes); Gaspar had 34 percent (28,035 votes) and Abed had 27 percent (22,838 votes.)