South Orange County had its share of challenges in 2017: a Laguna Niguel Mayor stepping down and eventually resigning from the council after being accused of bullying while he found contract cost overruns, two cities switching to district elections and a wireless firm contracting with various cities while making unclear promises of legal protections and taking a large percentage of revenue.
Mission Viejo could move from at-large elections to district elections after a voting rights attorney sent a demand letter warning the city it is violating state law because the current voting system disenfranchises minorities from getting elected.
The Anaheim City Council this week narrowly approved a plan to dismiss all appointees to city boards and commissions so as to create more equal representation under the city’s new district-based electoral system.
Hopes that Santa Ana would give voters a chance to transform the city’s electoral systems were dealt a blow this week when the City Council voted down a proposal. But activists signaled that they would take up the cause.
Newly elected Anaheim City Councilman Jose F. Moreno, the first Latino on council in many years, brought the crowd to its feet during his swearing-in speech. Then he found out he’s serving a shortened term.
After years as the Anaheim City Council’s underdog, Mayor Tom Tait is now leading a four-member majority that promises to focus more on community services and less on subsidies for the city’s tourism industry.
Anaheim City Councilman Jordan Brandman’s lead over challenger Jose Moreno in the race for the District 3 council seat has dropped to just 61 votes, as the county Registrar of Voters continues to count vote-by-mail and provisional ballots.