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Voter’s Edge California
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Presentado por
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League of Women Voters of California Education Fund
KPBS Voters Guide@KPBSNews
November 6, 2018 — Elección General de California
Local

City of San Clemente
Measure V Initiative Statute - Majority Approval Required

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Resultados electorales

No se aprueba

7,990 votos si (29.7%)

18,933 votos no (70.3%)

100% de distritos activos (28/28).

Initiative for Election of City Council Members by District
— undefined

Shall the ordinance be adopted to change the manner in which City Council members are elected from "at large" to "by district," to establish a task force to recommend district boundaries, and to require a special election if the City Council does not adopt the task force's recommendation?

¿Qué es esta propuesta?

Información básica sobre la iniciativa de ley — Información oficial sobre esta iniciativa

Un voto por el SÍ significa

The following official argument was submitted in favor of the measure:[1]

 

 

San Clemente is a great city with a beach town feel. The Initiative will allow the city to remain special. If approved, this Initiative only changes the method of electing Council members from at-large to by/fromdistricts.

Council members will have to live in the district they represent, and will be elected only by voters living in the district. If approved, the Initiative takes effect with the November 2020 election and requires the Council seats up for election be elected by/from districts. In November 2022, the remaining Council seats will be elected by/from districts. The Initiative establishes a procedure for setting districts and requires that the districts comply with state and federal law.

Advantages of district elections include local representation, lower campaign costs, more candidates, increased public engagement, increased voter participation, and eliminating one location from controlling a majority of Council seats. These are all benefits everyone should embrace.

The choice is yours. If adopted, this Initiative will result in district elections of Council members.

I urge you to vote YES.[2]

Un voto por el NO significa

The following official argument was submitted in opposition to the measure:[1]

 

Vote NO on Measure V.

Dividing San Clemente would be disastrous. If Measure V passes, Residents would lose the right to vote for all 5 City Council seats. Districts would reduce voting rights from the ability to vote for 2 or 3 open seats every two years, to voting for a single seat every 4 years. Effectively, this reduces voter representation from 5 to 1 (based entirely off of geographic location). If you disagree with your representative, you are left without a voice.

For almost 100 years, every voter in San Clemente has had the opportunity to vote for every council seat. This system has served our city and its residents well. Only 14% of California cities have divided into districts (most of whom are much larger or have underrepresented minority voters—neither of which apply to San Clemente). 86% of California cities continue to use the same At-Large voting system San Clemente has enjoyed since it was founded.

Independent research (through the NDC) reveals that moving San Clemente to district elections would significantly reduce the electoral influence of Latino and Asian-American voters. Additionally, districting would split budget priorities and council member focus (each member would likely be more focused on their specific area, rather than city-wide, mutually beneficial intent). Make no mistake, dividing our city into districts is a bad idea and poor fit for our small town culture.

San Clemente is beautiful, well-run, safe, fiscally sound and is one of the best places in the world to live. Don’t divide San Clemente. Don’t draw lines between neighborhoods. Don’t pit neighbor against neighbor. Don’t support voting districts in our great town.

Vote NO on Measure V. Don’t divide. Continue to unite. One team, One town.[2]

Análisis del analista legislativo / Proposal

The following impartial analysis of the measure was prepared by the office of the San Clemente City Attorney:

 

 

Measure V is an initiative measure proposed by more than 10 percent but fewer than 15 percent of San Clemente voters who signed a petition to place it on the ballot. It proposes to change how San Clemente City Council members are elected. Currently, all council members are elected “at large.” They must be registered voters, but may live in any part of the City. All voters may vote for any candidate regardless of where that candidate lives in the City.

Measure V proposes to change the method of election to be “by district.” If adopted, the Measure would require that each council member come from one of five new city council districts. Only voters residing in a district would elect the council member for that district.

To establish the new districts, the measure would require the creation of a “District Elections Task Force” to recommend district boundaries for the city council’s consideration. The task force would consist of seven City residents, two selected by the council (from anywhere in the City) and five selected by the city clerk (one each from the Talega, Rancho San Clemente, South-West, Forster Ranch, and North Beach areas of the City).

Within 30 days of the task force’s appointment, the task force would be required to hold at least three public hearings to seek input and submit its recommendation to the council. The council may then adopt the recommended boundaries or decline to do so. If the council declines, then the Measure would require the City to hold a special election 88 to 103 days later to submit the recommendation directly to the voters.

Once boundaries are adopted, then the city council would draw lots to determine the order in which districts will elect their representatives to the council as current council members complete their terms of office. Current council members will remain in office until they complete their respective terms.

If the measure is approved and if the 2020 federal census shows a significant change in population distribution among the districts, the task force would reconvene to recommend boundary adjustments to the council.

In summary:

A “YES” vote on the measure will change how city council members are elected from “at large” to “by district” with district boundaries to be recommended by a task force and either accepted by the city council or by voters at a special election if the city council does not accept the task force’s proposed boundaries. Only those voters within a council district would elect the council member for that particular district.

A “NO” vote on the measure would not change the current method of electing city council members. Each council member would continue to be elected “at large” by the voters citywide.[2]

 
—San Clemente City Attorney[

Published Arguments — Arguments for and against the ballot measure

Leer la legislación propuesta

Legislación propuesta

I/We the undersigned, registered and qualified voter(s) of the State of California, residents of the City of San Clemente, pursuant to Section 3 of Article XI of the California Constitution and Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 34450) of part 1 of Division 2 of Title 4 of the Government Code, present to the City Council of the City of San Clemente this petition and request that the following proposed amendment to the charter of the City and proposed municipal ordinance be submitted immediately to the registered and qualified voters of the City for their adoption or rejection at a Regular or Special election on a date to be determined by the City Council pursuant to sections 9214 & 9255 of Division 9 of the Elections Code.
The proposed amendment and proposed ordinance read as follows (with amended language in bold face type and deleted language in strike out type):

SECTION 1 – TITLE
This measure shall be known and may be cited as “Voters Election Reform Initiative for a True Accountability System”(“VERITAS”)

SECTION II – FINDINGS AND DECLARATIONS
The People find and declare as follows:Political power should not be concentrated in the hands of a few long term City Council incumbents. Such concentrated power stifles competition and discourages other qualified candidates from seeking office.
Every neighborhood in San Clemente should have an equal voice on the City Council. Currently, some San Clemente neighborhoods are less frequently represented, or not represented at all, on the City Council. Our system of democratic government depends upon representatives who are accountable to the citizens they serve. To improve accountability, Council members should reside in, and be elected from, neighborhoods in the City. Neighborhood district elections will promote more personal contact with Council representatives, insure a wider and more diversified range of input on issues before the Council, reduce the reliance upon Citywide slate mailings, and decrease the cost of running for office. The VERITAS neighborhood districts give a voice and a vote to five of San Clemente’s neighborhood areas, balanced according to census data as required by law. The Council Members should be elected by a majority of the voters in each district. Currently, Council Members usually are elected with substantially less than a fifty percent (50%) majority vote. VERITAS implements American traditions. The VERITAS reforms, which include neighborhood district elections, will strengthen our city manager form of government by creating a more accurate and effective method for the People to communicate their will to the city government. The VERITAS five neighborhood districts comply with the criteria established in the ordinance and will create natural neighborhood areas of contiguous and compact territory bounded by natural boundaries or street lines, and will provide fair representation on the City Council. The voters understand that the district boundaries that will be used after the first elections under districts that will be drawn by the city based on the benefit of the census data published for the decennial census in 2010-2011; the people find that the City of San Clemente is a built-out community and that the distribution of its population has remained relatively stable among its neighborhoods; and believe that the district boundaries will be created
with districts nearly equal in size both before and after the 2010-2011 census.

SECTION III – PROPOSED AMENDMENTS TO CITY MUNICIPAL CODE
The City municipal code is amended to read:
a. Number, Term, & Districts.
The City Council shall consist of five voting members elected from the City by district at the times and in the manner provided herein, and who shall serve for a term of four years. The term of all members shall commence on the first Tuesday following such election and each member shall serve until the member’s successor is elected and qualified. Any ties in voting shall be settled by the casting of lots.

b. The five members of the City Council shall be elected by five districts as established by ordinance. These districts shall be used for the election or recall of members of the City Council, and for the filling of any vacancy in the City Council by appointment.

c. Upon approval of this amendment, the City Clerk shall convene the District Elections Task Force in the manner set forth in the Municipal Code (as approved by amendment herein). Within 60 days following the publication of the decennial federal census beginning in 2020, the City Clerk shall determine the total population of the City of San Clemente and each of the five districts and report its findings to the City Council. If any district deviates more than the maximum percentage
allowable under established law, the City Clerk shall convene the District Elections Task Force in the manner set forth in the Municipal Code.

(d) For the purpose of nominating and electing the five members of the City Council by districts, the first election under this Amendment shall be held after the City Council established the five districts pursuant to the District Elections Task Force as described in the amendments to the Municipal Code as soon as possible after the amendments herein are approved by voters in a special election(s) as defined in Section 1400 following adoption of this Amendment. Council Members shall be elected by district based on the number of Council Seats up for elections (San Clemente staggers seats every two years thus either 3 or 2 seats are up in every two year election period) and shall serve a period of up to the four year term (as the term shall end Ballot Measures-V 8 Section upon the new Council

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