A couple more candidates have joined the race for Lake Havasu City Council. That brings the total number of people who have signaled their intention to run in the 2020 election up to eight during the first week that candidate packets have been available.
Rudy Vargas and Robert Hopkins both picked up candidate packets from the city clerk’s office on Thursday, after a total of six candidates pulled papers the first day they were available on Monday. Three seats on the Lake Havasu City Council will be up for grabs in the 2020 election. Incumbents Gordan Groat and David Lane are among the candidates who have pulled papers, along with challengers Michael Bonny, Nancy Campbell, David Jaramillo, and Cameron Moses.
Current Councilwoman Donna McCoy has said she will not seek re-election in 2020.
Vargas, the owner of London Bridge Landscapes, said he has lived in Lake Havasu City for 17 years – moving to town at the age of 5.
He said he loves his town and is interested in politics, so he decided to embark on his first campaign.
“I’m just a 22 year old kid who wants to get started,” Vargas said.
Vargas said he likes how the city is being run and he wants to be a part of it.
“I see that there is a lot of potential and a lot of development and growth going on,” he said. “I would just like to be involved with that in any way that I can, and running for city office would be a good way to be in the middle of everything.”
Vargas said his main focus would be on creating more things to do for the youth and building the city’s culture.
“I’m really supportive of athletic competitions coming here like mountain bikes, wake boarding, skiing, and that being our demographic instead of someone who is coming to get really drunk and cause a ruckus,” he said.
Campbell said she has lived in Lake Havasu City since 1980, and graduated from high school here. She has been involved in Rotary, Chamber of Commerce, and is a trustee and serves on the Board of Ethics at Havasu regional Hospital.
Campbell has owned a variety of businesses in town the retail and hospitality industries, and currently is the sole proprietor of Lee-Marshall Designs.
Campbell said one of her main focuses on the City Council would be to expand workforce housing.
“Lake Havasu has the highest rate of rising costs of homes,” Campbell said. “The market is outgrowing most salaries in our community.”
She said the explosion of long-term rentals becoming short-term rentals has served to compound the problem.
Another top issue for Campbell would be to bring more trade schools to town. She said The Wave has been a successful hospitality trade school, but Lake Havasu City could also use trade schools for other industries such as construction, electrical, welding and more.
She said she would largely support the current direction of the council on most other issues.
“I love the community and I would like the rest to stay pretty consistent,” she said. “I think they have done an amazing job in other places.”
Hopkins could not be reached for comment.