The seating arrangement on the dais in the City Council chambers may have changed but the faces haven't.
Incumbents Toni Iseman, Kelly Boyd and Elizabeth Pearson were re-installed Tuesday, winners of the 2010 City Council election, bucking a national trend that saw highly regarded elected officials sidelined. Iseman was named mayor, succeeding Pearson. Councilwoman Jane Egly was chosen as mayor pro tem.
"I now have the opportunity to say what an amazing job Elizabeth has done as mayor," said Iseman, who was elected to the council for an unprecedented fourth term. "That's what it says on this paper, but it is easy for me to say. She has always been the right person at the right time.
"Elizabeth's career has been littered with natural disasters, but she knows how to get people to volunteer willingly and to make them comfortable."
Iseman presented Pearson with the ceremonial gavel as a memento of her most recent term as mayor.
The Nov. 2 election, in which the three incumbents were returned to office, was certified by county Registrar of Voters Neal Kelley on Nov. 22.
As expected by local political pundits, Boyd came in first with 7,190 ticks on the ballots, 30.3% of the total votes cast. Pearson came in second with 6,669 votes, 28.1% of the total, followed by Iseman with 6,023.
Slightly more than 16% of local voters picked challenger Emanuel Patrascu for one of their maximum of three votes.
Laguna Beach has 18,873 registered voters, 61.26% of whom voted in the November election, 30.44% by mail-in ballot, according to Kelley's office. Registered Democrats outnumber Republicans 7,179 to 6,680, but 4,038 Laguna voters decline to state an affiliation.
Local tallies in national elections
Political outsider Carly Fiorina did better in Laguna against her Democratic rival for U.S. senator than Republican gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman did against Democrat Jerry Brown, but she was still outvoted by Barbara Boxer supporters, losing 5,272 to 5,615.
Democrat Beth Krom, with the strong support of Iseman, beat Republican incumbent John Campbell for the 48th District seat in the House of Representatives, 5,398 to 5,200 in town, but Campbell won districtwide.
It was a Democratic sweep in Laguna, with only a couple of exceptions.
Democrat Brown defeated Republican Whitman in Laguna by less than 500 votes: 5,707 votes to 5,259. Green party candidate Laura Wells picked up 110 votes.
Longtime Los Angeles County Dist. Atty. Steve Cooley was the only Republican to come out ahead in Laguna Beach. Cooley, who preaches non-partisanship in his office, beat San Francisco District Attorney, Democrat Kamala Harris in Laguna by 588 votes, 5,364 to 4,776, but lost in the statewide election.