The following is a press release from an organization unaffiliated with Voice of OC. The views expressed here are not those of Voice of OC.


Competing City Council Measure Z did not receive votes necessary to ratify General Plan update


Contact: Rick Huffman
Email: Phone: (714) 549-5884

(COSTA MESA, CALIFORNIA) – November 10, 2016 –Measure Y, the Citizen’s Smart Growth Initiative supporting voter approval of certain large projects that exceed the General Plan, was overwhelmingly approved by voters with a 35.8% margin. With 66 of 66 precincts reported by the Orange County Registrar of Voters, preliminary results show that Measure Y passed with 16,991 residents (or 67.9% of votes) voting Yes. On the other hand, the Costa Mesa City Council’s competing initiative only garnered 13,372 approval votes (or 55.5% of votes), rendering Measure Z ineffective.

This two-year citizens’ initiative process was brought for and by the people of Costa Mesa to first qualify Measure Y as a ballot measure, and then to support a campaign against well-funded PACs, including “Costa Mesans Against the Power Grab,” a PAC supported by the Building Industry Association. While it was difficult for the voters to cut through the confusing and misleading information that Measure Y opponents disseminated, those opponents failed to defeat Measure Y.

Rick Huffman, Treasurer of Costa Mesa First, commented as the election results trickled in late Tuesday night, “The people of Costa Mesa voted to have a choice on the large projects that impact their lives and change the landscape of our coastal community. Most residents want responsible growth and redevelopment, but wish to have say in large projects that exceed the General Plan. During the General Plan update process, many residents attended the outreach meetings to voice their concerns about the City Council majority approving general plan amendments for large developments and huge variances for other projects, but our city leaders seemed to pay no attention to their constituents’ pleas.”

“Thank you to all the residents who voted, and volunteers who gave countless hours of time to educate and reach out to residents. We overcame a six-figure, well-funded politically savvy campaign machine and certain City Councilmen who worked hard to discourage and confuse the voters,” said Cynthia McDonald, a Costa Mesa resident and one of the authors of Measure Y. “It took a lot of courage for residents to stand up to big money, out-of-town developers and special interest groups, and a City Council majority that ignored and defied residents.”

Costa Mesa First (FPPC 1332564) is a group of concerned Costa Mesa residents and encourages the adoption and implementation of smart growth policies. Please contact Costa Mesa First at P.O. Box 2282, Costa Mesa, CA 92628 (714) 549-5884, Follow us on Facebook and Twitter and at

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