BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — The June primaries are six months out, but a huge political year took no time getting started.

After weeks of saying he hadn’t made up his mind yet, 3rd District Supervisor Mike Maggard announced he won’t seek a fifth term on Kern’s Board of Supervisors on the first Monday of 2022.

“It is important that I spend more time with my children and grandchildren in the years ahead,” Maggard wrote in a press release announcing his retirement.

Maggard, who still has a year left in office, has spent 30 years in public service in Bakersfield and Kern County, serving eight years on Bakersfield’s City Council and 16 years on Kern’s Board of Supervisors.

“I remain devoted to the people of Kern County and will work tirelessly through the remainder of this term to complete the many projects and initiatives which are underway,” he said in the release.

The announcement confirms weeks of reporting by 17 News. Particularly that two candidates emerged for the District 3 seat despite Maggard’s claim he hadn’t decided.

In early December, Jeff Flores, Maggard’s Chief of Staff, told 17 News he would be honored to run for his boss’ seat should Maggard retire — sparking questions about if Flores already knew the answer.

On Monday, the current KHSD Trustee reiterated that sentiment to 17 News in a statement, but said he will announce a final decision in the next few weeks.

On the other hand, Retired CHP assistant chief Brian Smith has been—as he puts it— campaigning unofficially for weeks.

Smith received an official campaign ID from the California Secretary of State back in October and
The Bakersfield Californian stopped running his weekly column two weeks ago. All of this despite Smith still not making an official bid for the seat, which he says he will do in January.

We will be watching to see who declares for the race first, and how that could impact the 3rd District race in 2022.