San Andreas man clinches 1st District

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By SCOTT PESZNECKER

More than two months before the primary election and without hanging a single campaign sign, a San Andreas man will be the next Calaveras County District 1 supervisor.

Retired California Highway Patrol Officer Bill Claudino, 60, was the only person to file election papers for the District 1 supervisorial race in March.

Supervisor Lucy Thein decided not to seek re-election, so Claudino will be the only District 1 candidate on the March ballot.

Which means he can't lose.

"I can't say that's making me feel any which way," Claudino said. "I'm looking forward to doing this job."

Claudino has lived in the county for 35 years, mostly in San Andreas. He served nine years on the Calaveras County Fair Board, mostly during the 1980s.

He also organized and led the Calaveras County Emergency Medical Care Committee, was a member of the Calaveras County Juvenile Justice Commission and is a former president of the Calaveras/California Junior Chamber of Commerce.

Shortly before yesterday's 5 p.m. filing deadline, Claudino stood outside the Calaveras County Government Center, reading headlines from local newspapers.

He glanced over an article about the upcoming District 2 supervisorial race, in which six candidates have filed to replace Supervisor Paul Stein.

Without opposition, Claudino said he won't have to campaign, so he can focus on learning about county issues.

"It's going to save me some time and money," he said.

But Claudino never planned to run unopposed.

He said he first considered running last year, as his 37-year career with the CHP wound down. He then made the decision to seek the supervisor post before Thein announced she'd let her term expire.

As for his future as supervisor, Claudino downplays his Republican political views. He said a supervisor's political affiliation is irrelevant to the job.

"I firmly believe the job of a supervisor is to represent the people," he said.

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