Registered voters should be receiving their ballots now and can mail in or drop off at designated vote centers through Nov. 8, 2022. Credit: Von Balanon

This election season, there are two seats up for grabs to represent residents on the Madera County Board of Supervisors.

What’s at stake?

Water, for starters. Madera County has been hit harder than most California counties when it comes to drought conditions, and residents are seeing wells dry across the county. The county’s approach to complying with the state’s new groundwater law has been controversial, to say the least, especially with farmers uninterested in paying a fee to pump groundwater that has historically been free.

But there’s also the new growing pains that come along with explosive growth in the Madera Ranchos area, as Tesoro Viejo and Riverstone add new subdivisions, and new master planned communities are approved.

What does a Madera County Supervisor do?

In Madera County, there are five supervisors, each representing districts across the county. Supervisors pass laws, make budgets, and figure out how to spend money from many state programs that address affordable housing, homelessness, public and behavioral health, MediCal, unemployment, and other benefits.

In Madera, where growth is common in unincorporated areas, the supervisors are very active in approving new subdivisions and the roads and infrastructure that serve them.

Who is running for the Madera County Board of Supervisors?

There are two competitive districts in this election cycle: District 1, which represents the Madera Ranchos and southeastern Madera County; and, District 5, representing the foothill and mountain communities of the eastern part of the county.

District 1

Madera County Supervisor District 1 includes the Madera Ranchos and much of the southeastern part of the county.

Jordan Wamhoff

Jordan Wamhoff is a Fresno police officer and has served as the Fresno Police Officers Association vice president since Nov. 2020. He is also the co-founder of SolarQuote Installation and Maintenance. 

His stated priorities are fighting for local control from Sacramento, bringing more water to the district, and building new neighborhoods that prioritize traffic safety.

His top campaign contributions come from suburban developers Granville Homes and Greenleaf Orchards (the company behind the Liberty Groves master planned community).

Key endorsements include:

  • Assemblymember Jim Patterson
  • Madera County Supervisor David Rogers
  • Former Madera County Sheriff John Anderson
  • Peace Officers Research Association of California

Andy Wheeler

Andy Wheeler is a senior financial advisor with the Rosch Group and has worked as a financial advisor for more than two decades. He was elected to the Golden Valley Unified School District Board of Trustees in 2016.

His stated priorities are: protecting the county’s water supply, funding the sheriff and fire departments, expanding and maintaining roads, and prioritizing business friendly investments.

Wheeler’s top campaign contributions come from Robert McCaffrey, the developer of Tesoro Viejo, and Tim Jones, the developer of Riverstone.

Key endorsements include:

  • Madera County Sheriff Tyson Pogue
  • Madera Deputy Sheriff’s Association
  • Madera Police Officers’ Association
  • County Firefighters/CalFire Local 2881
  • Madera County Supervisors Lety Gonzalez, Robert Poythress, and Tom Wheeler
  • Outgoing Madera County Supervisor Brett Frazier
District 5

Madera County Supervisor District 5 includes most of the foothills and mountains of eastern Madera County, including the communities of Oakhurst, Bass Lake, Coarsegold, O’Neals and Raymond.

Robert “Bobby” Macaulay

Robert ‘Bobby’ Macaulay works as chief of staff for retiring supervisor Tom Wheeler. He was born and raised in Oakhurst and has lived there his whole life. 

Macaulay was elected to serve as the Boys and Girls Club of Oakhurst President in 2021 and awarded the 2021 Rotarian of the Year.

Macaulay’s priorities are land management, housing and homelessness, and public safety, according to his website. 

His top donors to his campaign include Richard Spencer, who owns Harris Construction, who bids on county contracts, the Pines Resort in Bass Lake, and developers William Tathum and Bob McCaffrey.

Key endorsements include:

  • Madera County Sheriff Tyson Pogue
  • Madera County District Attorney Sally Moreno
  • Former Madera County Supervisor Gary Gilbert
  • Madera County Deputy Sheriff’s Association
  • Madera Association of Realtors
  • Valley Young Republicans
  • CalFire Local 2881
Mark Reed

Mark Reed is an Oakhurst resident who runs a company from his own ranch to entertain and educate children about farm animals. He comes from a family of farmers and ranchers and has “family, friends and business ties” that go back five decades in Madera County. He studied Architectural Drafting at Pierce Jr. College and his career in business management. He bought his first company at age 26 and has operated many businesses since, according to his website.

Reed ran unsuccessfully for Congress in 2018 and 2020 to serve Congressional District 30, located in Los Angeles County.

Reed said his priorities include wildfire safety, public safety and economic development.

Reed received backlash during his June campaign when he sent out flyers calling his opponent Macaulay’s supporters “witches and warlocks,” naming several women specifically. 

Reed has not accepted contributions from large businesses or developers, and only reports smaller donations of less than $300.

Key endorsements include:

  • Madera County Republican Party
  • Congressman Tom McClintock
  • California Republican Assembly
  • Michael Reagan, son of former President Ronald Reagan
Who is funding the candidates’ campaigns?

A Fresnoland analysis of campaign donations reported shows that developers are the major contributors to most campaigns.

Click on the graphics below to learn more about donations to each candidate.

District 1

District 5

Note: A previous version of this story said that supervisor candidate Bobby Macaulay works for his parents’ insurance office. He no longer works there. A previous version of this story also said candidate Mark Reed did not accept donations over $300. The story has been updated to include several more recent large donations accepted after publication from businesses and developers.

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