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Three seats are up in this year's election, and the candidate filing period opens soon.

PMG FILE PHOTO - City Councilor Elena Uhing, right, is sworn for her fourth term in by Forest Grove City Recorder Anna Ruggles in 2016.Candidate filing for this year's Forest Grove City Council election opens early next month.

Starting July 6, qualified residents of Forest Grove can throw their hat in the ring for a seat on the council. Three seats are up in this year's election, with the top three vote-getters in the race being elected.

At present, those seats are held by Councilors Tim Rippe, Elena Uhing and Adolph "Val" Valfre Jr.

PMG FILE PHOTO - Tim RippeRippe was first elected to the council in 2016 and is completing his first term.

"Yes, I plan on submitting my name to the voters again with the hope that they will honor me with the privilege of serving the residents of Forest Grove for another four years as one of their city councilors," Rippe told the Pamplin Media Group on Monday, June 22, confirming he plans to run for re-election.

Uhing is in her fourth term on the council.

"It is my intention to run again," Uhing confirmed Monday night.

Valfre was appointed in 2017 after Matt Vandehey resigned. Vandehey had been on the council for less than a year when he stepped down, so Valfre has served out most of the term to which Vandehey was elected in 2016.

PMG FILE PHOTO - Val ValfreAsked whether he plans to seek a full term in his own right this year, Valfre said he does.

"We have set some ambitious yet truly achievable goals and objectives for the city, and I would welcome the privilege of working with my fellow council members to bring these to reality," Valfre said in an email Monday.

Two of three winners in the 2018 elections for Forest Grove city councilor have since died in office. Tom Johnston died last fall after a battle with leukemia. Ron Thompson died unexpectedly in February.

Under the Forest Grove city charter, appointees to a council seat when there is a vacancy serve out the remainder of the elected term. That means Councilors Mariana Valenzuela and Kristy Kottkey's seats will not be up for election until 2022.

Valenzuela was appointed after Johnston's death. Kottkey was appointed this spring to Thompson's vacant seat.

The candidate filing period for Forest Grove City Council closes Aug. 25.

For more information about how to file for the election, visit the city of Forest Grove's website.

The election will be held Nov. 3. Winners will be sworn in for the start of their new terms later that month.

By Mark Miller
Washington County Editor
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