Former El Dorado County supervisor John Knight narrowly won a seat on the Los Rios Community College District board of trustees in a race that wasn’t decided until two counties finished tallying votes Tuesday.
Knight, 67, defeated Center High School teacher Marc Allaman by 54 votes, about one-tenth of 1 percent of the 51,369 votes counted in the Los Rios Area 3 contest. The seat represents most of El Dorado County and part of eastern Sacramento County.
Four candidates were vying to serve the remaining half of Trustee Terry Cochran’s four-year term. Cochran died in February at age 74 from complications related to sinus cancer, according to the district.
Knight led by 151 votes after an initial election night count three weeks ago, an advantage that shrunk as officials in El Dorado and Sacramento counties recorded last-minute mail and provisional ballots. A week ago, Allaman jumped into a four-vote lead, but that vanished as soon as El Dorado County processed a new batch of votes a day later.
Though both counties issued final results Tuesday, Allaman, 61, said he would wait until the official state certification deadline of Dec. 2 before conceding. He ran on a platform of ensuring Folsom Lake College would get its share of funds to accommodate growth in Folsom south of Highway 50 and thought his education experience would give him an advantage in the race.
“I’m not going to pay to have a recount because that could be pretty expensive,” he said. “So I’m going with the way the vote comes out. Of course I’m disappointed.”
Knight said Tuesday he plans to look for ways for Los Rios to become less dependent on volatile state funding. He said community colleges don’t have enough funding to educate all students who want to pursue high-demand fields like nursing.
“The whole system needs to look at its future and not be tied to the purse strings of California so much,” he said.
Los Rios Community College
board of trustees