Warrenton voters opt for three new facesWARRENTON - Voters opted for change Tuesday.

All three incumbents on the Warrenton City Commission lost their seats.

Mark Kujala ousted former Mayor Jeff Hazen 1,144 to 886. Contractor Terry Ferguson won a three-way race, defeating incumbent Russ Farmer and a third candidate, Ken Yuill. Ferguson polled 811, Farmer 645 and Yuill 404. And Mayor Paul Rodriguez was beaten by challenger Frank Orrell. Orrell polled 1,046 to Rodriguez' 824.

Kujala was bubbling with excitementat the victory Tuesday night, following a campaign of lawn signs, advertising and letters to the editor.

"I'm just thrilled. It's kind of exciting," he said. "I had a lot of support. I campaigned hard. I did a lot of advertising."

Frank OrrellSo what issue turned the tide?

"Sewer and water rate increases hit home," Kujala said. "How you fund the improvements you make - those are the issues the community still has to deal with."

Kujala had kind words for defeated Hazen.

"He's had five years of leadership for the city of Warrenton and everybody appreciates his service. A lot of people looked to his leadership after Sept. 11. He's a good man. Terry FergusonWe agree more than we disagree. I hope to continue with the good work."

Orrell was also pumped at his win.

"I'm honored that people in Warrenton would put their faith in me," Orrell said. "My goal is to carry out their wishes to the best of my ability."

"I feel I made a lot of good contacts, talked to lots of people and listened to their concerns. I kind of got down in the trenches with them. That helped me a lot."

Water-sewer issues are key for residents, Orrell said. "They want someone who would take their concerns to heart and try to find a more workable solution to their monthly water and sewer rates."


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