Four pull candidacy papers for Encinitas mayor


The race for mayor is officially on.

Deputy Mayor Tony Kranz and three residents pulled candidacy papers for the November election, City Clerk Kathy Hollywood confirmed July 15.

The filing period for the role started July 14 and paperwork has to be turned in by Aug. 8.

Kranz said he began considering running for the role when Councilwoman Teresa Barth decided not to run last spring.

“I’ve appreciated the leadership she’s shown,” he said.

However, Kranz said his views aren’t always the same as Barth’s, adding he can’t be “boxed in” with any of the council members.

“I’ve been on both sides of some 3-2 votes,” he said.

If elected, Kranz said he’d work with regional agencies to address issues like traffic and density-bonus housing projects.

Kranz was elected in 2012, and if his mayoral bid fails, his council seat will still have two years left.

This upcoming election marks the first time voters will directly elect a mayor, which is for a two-year term. Proposition K passed in 2012, doing away with a council majority choosing the position.

Mayor Kristin Gaspar has said she’ll run either for mayor or the one open council seat. She said this week that she’d announce which position later this month.

In an interview several weeks ago, Gaspar said she’d work to promote economic development and hold the line on city spending.

Mike Bawany, an engineer who has lived in Encinitas for 28 years, said he plans to retire soon and being mayor would give him a chance to give back to the city.

“I’d be in the position to make a difference in Encinitas,” Bawany said, adding that this is his first time running for office.

Bawany is especially concerned with traffic and development. He said the city should be cautious when issuing building permits, for instance.

He added that it’s early in the process and he’s still researching which issues his campaign will focus on.

Alex Fidel, another candidate, announced his intent to run for mayor last fall. At council meetings, Fidel has spoken out against water fluoridation and cannabis prohibition.

Community activist Al Rodbell pulled papers, but hasn’t committed to entering the race. He said he’s taking a few weeks to consider his bid.

“While I may have my own ideas on how a campaign could be ideally pursued, it may not resonate with voters, and if I do decide to run, it has (to) be a real attempt to win,” he said.

Rodbell has opposed the city’s purchase of the Pacific View property and frequently blogs about other city issues.

Catherine Blakespear and Julie Graboi, the two council candidates who have pulled papers so far, have been actively campaigning in recent months.