PICO RIVERA – A special election will be held after all to replace an El Rancho Unified School District board member who died earlier this year, officials said Thursday.The reversal came after residents forced the vote by submitting to the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk’s Office more than 600 signatures – or 1.5 percent of Pico Rivera’s registered voters – requesting an election to replace board member Raul Salcido, who died in August.“It’s nothing personal,” said community activist Joe Caballero. “We just felt it was better to let the community decide, instead of three people selecting someone who was well-connected to the district.”In October, the board rejected holding a special election – which now will be held April 4 and cost the district $145,000 – and voted to appoint Delia Alvidrez to complete Salcido’s term, which expires in 2007.Alvidrez, 65, is a longtime El Rancho educator and administrator.“I’m upset,” she said Thursday. “Not because I have to step down, but because now the district that is barely financially OK will have to spend money on this election. The residents could have just waited until the term expired.”Board member Vincent Chavez, who voted to appoint Alvidrez, said he felt the board’s decision was the right one.“We felt it was right to appoint a qualified person instead of spending money that could be better used to help students,” Chavez said.Three candidates have so far filed nomination papers for the election, including Alvidrez, Allan Maciel and Aurora Villon.Villon, 48, has been an educator for 28 years, including 13 years with the Whittier Union High School District.“I have always been very involved in schools. My goal is to better the district by using my area of expertise,” she said.Maciel, a teacher and school coordinator, could not be reached for comment.The deadline for filing nomination papers for the election is 5 p.m. Jan. 6. [email protected] (562) 698-0955, Ext. 3028 AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORERose Parade grand marshal Rita Moreno talks New Year’s Day outfit and ‘West Side Story’ remake160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!