Republican Megan Dahle wins District 1 state Assembly seat, looks to win over Nevada County before March election

John Orona
Staff Writer

Republican Megan Dahle said she hasn’t spent much time in Nevada County — something she plans to change.

Dahle defeated Democrat Elizabeth Betancourt in Tuesday’s special election to win the District 1 state Assembly seat previously held by her husband, Brian Dahle.

Unofficial election results show Dahle beating Betancourt 48,516 votes to 35,342, or 58% to 42%, with all precincts reporting.

Placer County went to Dahle, 5,829 votes to 4,919, or 54% to 46%, while Nevada County voted Betancourt, 11,153 votes to 9,414, or 54% to 46%. Nevada County was the only one in District 1 Dahle lost.

“Nevada County is probably the one county that we’ve not been able to spend a lot of time in, but we’re looking forward to changing that,” Dahle said. “I think that’s just one of the places that’s going to get to know me better. I will work hard for them and they’ll feel my representation in their lives.”

Shortly after conceding the race to Dahle Tuesday night, Betancourt announced in a Facebook post that she plans to run for the seat in the 2020 election.

“This is the beginning not an end. Yes, it’s the end of our special election for 2019, but it’s the beginning of our race for 2020,” the post stated.


Once Megan Dahle is officially sworn in, she’ll go through training and start hiring campaign staff before quickly gearing up for the March 2020 primary. It will be her third election in eight months, with the fourth — the November 2020 election — to follow.

Dahle hopes to be sworn in on Tuesday. According to state election officials, counties have to certify their results by Nov. 15 with the state making them official shortly afterward.

According to Dahle, her immediate priorities outside re-election will be on wildfire safety and dealing with PG&E power shutoffs. Dahle said she supports Gov. Gavin Newsom calling for a special session of the state Legislature to deal with PG&E and would support a tax credit for businesses affected by the shutoffs.

“I know businesses have been hit with tens of thousands of dollars worth of losses,” Dahle said. “There’s not going to be a quick fix for them, that’s why we need a special session to figure this out. We cannot wait any longer. It’s no longer an option.”

Dahle said she supports efforts by the Nevada City, Grass Valley and Nevada County governments to lobby the California Public Utilities Commission and the governor into regulating PG&E public safety power shutoff events.

Dahle said one way she hopes to see more of Nevada County and win over Betancourt voters is by moderating a panel series featuring local women leaders in business and government. She’s held similar panels in Shasta County.


On March 3 Nevada County residents will vote in the 2020 presidential primary election. Residents will also vote for state Senate and Assembly District 1 races, just months after special elections filled the seats.

Residents will also vote for the District 1, 2 and 5 seats on the Nevada County Board of Supervisors. As of Wednesday, Ed Scofield is running unopposed in District 2, Hardy Bullock is running unopposed in District 5 after board chairman Richard Anderson announced he would not seek re-election, and incumbent Heidi Hall faces challenger Deborah Wilder for the District 1 seat.

Incumbent Superior Court Judges Linda Sloven and Robert Tice-Raskin currently are running unopposed for their respective seats.

In Nevada City, Mayor Reinette Senum will face re-election along with council members David Parker and Valerie Moberg, whose terms expire June 2020. The Nevada City Clerk position currently held by Neil Locke is also up for grabs.

County Central Committees will be on the ballot if more people file than there are seats available per district, according to the county elections office.

Higgins Fire District will also have a measure on the ballot that if passed would add a tax to pay for more employees, reopen the shuttered Dog Bar station and add paramedic services to all three district fire stations.

Candidates will formally declare for office between Monday and Dec. 6.

To contact Staff Writer John Orona, email or call (530) 477-4229.

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