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Incumbents Tony Beall and Carol Gamble are leading the race for Rancho Santa Margarita’s two open City Council seats, as the seven other candidates trail behind, according to the Orange County Registrar of Voters.
Early results showed that Beall is leading, followed by Gamble. Beth Schwartz and Glenn Acosta followed behind the two incumbents. The current council members also outraised the other candidates from Jan. 1 to Oct. 17, with Gamble reporting $48,294 raised and Beall reporting $17,689, according to their respective campaign disclosure forms.
This election comes at a time of unease among residents who fear potential rezoning of Dove Canyon Plaza, a nine-acre commercial center off Dove Canyon Drive to residential. The city, which was incorporated 20 years ago, now faces the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, and the newly elected council members will have to combat potential climbing cases.
In California, mail-in ballots can arrive in the days after the election and still count as long as they’re postmarked by Election Day.
Editors’ Note: This dispatch is part of the Voice of OC Youth Media program, working with student journalists to cover public policy issues across Orange County. If you would like to submit your own student media project related to Orange County civics or if you have any response to this work, contact Digital Editor Sonya Quick at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Read more about this race in depth: Nine Candidates Seeking to Fill Two Seats on Rancho Santa Margarita City Council.