By Darrell Todd Maurina
Incumbent Mayor David Lansford sailed to an easy victory Tuesday night as Clovis voters returned him to office with the highest margin he’s received in three elections.
Lansford won with 73 percent of votes cast over two competitors — Stephen Muscato with 15 percent and Raymond Atchley with 11 percent. Lansford won in every precinct of every ward.
A check of city records showed he won by comfortable margins in his earlier races, but not so large — 55 percent in 2000 compared to opponents with 32 and 13 percent; and 54 percent in 1996 when elected from a five-candidate field in which his nearest opponent had 27 percent.
Lansford said he was pleased but somewhat surprised by his large margin of victory.
“This victory is a little different from the others we have had,” Lansford said. “I don’t really know what to attribute it to, other than I have the most experience of those who wanted the position. My thought is there is still plenty of work to be done.”
That work will include a water pipeline project from Ute Lake near Logan and increasing public employee salary levels, he said.
“We need to work with as many people as we can to accomplish the greatest good for the city of Clovis,” Lansford said. “We need to address as many needs and seize as many opportunities as we can to improve our communities.”
Atchley said he was sorry to lose but wants to move on to other projects.
“I am aware I came in third and I offer my congratulations to Mayor Lansford,” Atchley said. “This is my third race (for elected office in Clovis) and I think as far as city government I may need to broaden my horizons. I plan to continue working to do what I can to make Clovis a better place.”
Atchley, who returned to college as an adult student after a civil service career in the Air Force, said for now he’ll focus on finishing his bachelor’s degree.
Muscato said he was disappointed to lose but also wanted to return to his work. For Muscato, that means continuing to head up Play, Inc., a nonprofit corporation that operates several Clovis recreation facilities.
“I’m just going to keep on doing what I’ve been doing for the kids,” Muscato said.