State Senator Paula Sandoval a Serious Contender for Replacing Rick Garcia on Denver City Council

February 24 2009, 1:00 PM
sen34Just as Denver voters are recovering from last November's general election, you might have to head back to the polls this summer. Denver City Councilman Rick Garcia is in the running to become regional director at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. If he gets the job, his departure from the city council would force a special election later this year and could set off a far-reaching game of political musical chairs. Garcia says he'll likely find out whether he wins the job by May. That means, under state law, that a special election would have to be held for his city council seat by September. If Garcia leaves, state Senator Paula Sandoval says she would "seriously consider" running to replace him on council--though she says it's "all speculation" until Garcia gets the HUD job. With Sandoval prohibited from running again because of term limits, two state representatives are already looking at taking a stab at her seat: Jerry Frangas and Joel Judd. Judd has already filed to run in 2010 and says he'll seek to be appointed to Sandoval's seat if she leaves early. Frangas says he'll take a look at his options after the legislature adjourns in May. Lucia Guzman, director of Human Rights and Community Relations for the city of Denver, is also said to be interested in Sandoval's seat.