Doug McKnight

Former Assemblywoman Anna Caballero hopes to return to the California State Assembly.

Her announcement Thursday came as a surprise to some who thought she would run for the Congressional seat of retiring Representative Sam Farr.

But standing in the sunlit courtyard of the Salinas City Hall where she served 15 years as councilwoman and mayor, Anna Caballero announced she is running for the state Assembly seat now held by Luis Alejo.

Doug McKnight

Monterey County Deputy District Attorney Jimmy Panetta has become the first Democrat to enter the race for retiring Congressman Sam Farr’s seat.

Panetta made the announcement Tuesday in front of Monterey’s historic Custom House.  He’s the youngest son of former US Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta

Krista Almanzan

Congressman Sam Farr will retire when his current term ends in January 2017.  He made the announcement Thursday at the National Steinbeck Center in Salinas to a room filled with family, friends and supporters.

“I don’t have any doubts that I could’ve gotten elected again and because you in this room have elected, almost counting primaries, 40 times,” said Farr.

But he said looking ahead to his next birthday on the Fourth of July helped motivate his decision.  He’s turning 75 and wants to spend more time with family.

A first challenger has emerged in next year’s campaign for the 20th Congressional District seat on the Central Coast.  She is Casey Lucius, a member of the Pacific Grove City Council for three years and a candidate for the Republican nomination against veteran Democratic Congressman Sam Farr.

Pacific Grove City Councilwoman Casey Lucius will run for the Congressional seat currently held by Congressman Sam Farr.  The 20th District House of Representatives seat represents the Central Coast.

The 38-year-old Navy veteran announced her candidacy today with a video on You Tube.  She recently resigned her job as a professor at the Naval War College to make this run for Congress.