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Wilk eyes seat, focuses on board

Politics: Official holds off on Assembly declaration to concentrate on ’11 race

Posted: September 14, 2011 1:55 a.m.
Updated: September 14, 2011 1:55 a.m.

Scott Wilk, member of the Santa Clarita Community College District Board of Trustees.

 

The race for state Assembly in 2012 is shaping up so far to be a battle between Republicans, with Republican activist Scott Wilk seeking the nomination along with Rep. Howard “Buck” McKeon’s wife, Patricia.
Wilk said Tuesday he intends to run in next year’s election for a seat representing the 38th Assembly District and take over for Santa Clarita Valley Assemblyman Cameron Smyth, who is required by term limits to leave office.

For now, however, Wilk is concentrating all his efforts on getting re-elected as a member of the Santa Clarita Community College District Board of Trustees.

“I intend to run for the Assembly seat, but that’s next year,” Wilk said. “Right now, I’m on the ballot for seat No. 5 of the Board of Trustees at COC.

“So, right now, I’m concentrating on my COC seat.”

Wilk, who has served on the COC board since 2006, explained he takes nothing for granted.

“Right now, I’m doing my due diligence meeting people and garnering information,” he said about the campaign to be re-elected college trustee. “You learn a lot going door-to-door, meeting people.”

Local interests

Wilk, 52, who once worked as district director for Congressman McKeon, R-Santa Clarita, would be running against the wife of his former boss if and when he formally throws his hat into the ring.

On Thursday, Patricia McKeon, 68, officially launched her campaign for state Assembly in November 2012.

“This is all so early,” Wilk said. “We have a long way to go. As a trustee, I’m just out meeting people.”

The primary for the state Assembly seat is June 5, 2012.

Smyth, who has represented Santa Clarita in Sacramento since 2006, is ineligible to seek re-election next year due to term limits set by the state.

For more than a decade, Wilk has worked with several local groups to secure funding for a number of local issues.

Through his work with Virginia-based Anchor Consulting LLC, — although he is not a registered lobbyist — Wilk has worked to develop local business and “client relations” for the firm.

Those efforts help secure federal funding for the Castaic Lake Water Agency in its efforts to clean up perchlorate contamination.

Since 2001, the consulting firm has secured more than $12 million for its Eastern Santa Clara River Basin Perchlorate Contamination Initiative.

It’s also worked closely with the Santa Clarita Chamber of Commerce on its visits to Washington, D.C.

Patricia McKeon, who by contrast emerged early in the election race for Smyth’s state Assembly seat, wasted no time attacking lobbyists.

“For too long, Sacramento has been controlled by the lobbyists and special interests and the politicians who do their bidding,” she said in a news release issued last week.

“I’m committed to reforming state government,” she said. “And I’m committed to winning the right to do so by bringing my conservative message to our neighbors and the working families throughout the 38th Assembly District.”

Redrawing districts

The state map for the Assembly districts — including the 38th Assembly district — is in the final stages of being redrawn.

The California Citizens Redistricting Commission is charged with redrawing boundaries for the state’s Assembly, Senate and Board of Equalization districts, as well as U.S. congressional districts, based on 2010 U.S. Census data.

Wilk — who has worked as chief of staff for politicians representing the 38th Assembly District, including Tom McClintock and Paula Boland — most recently established the Coalition of Suburban Communities for Fair Representation in an effort to give suburban communities like the Santa Clarita Valley a voice in redistricting.

Throughout the summer, he appeared regularly at redistricting hearings advocating the Santa Clarita Valley be kept whole as commissioners debated revisions being made to state jurisdictions.

The latest version of the 38th Assembly District keeps the Santa Clarita Valley whole but also includes Simi Valley and the northern part of the San Fernando Valley.

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