What if Los Angeles held an election and 80% of voters didn’t care?

Apathy could be the big winner in today's election. Recent history tells us most Angelenos won't bother to cast a ballot. That means out of 2 million registered voters, a small sliver might decide key issues that affect all the city's residents.

What's at stake in L.A.?

The school board could tip pro-charter

Charter school advocates are looking at their best chance to win a majority that favors charter schools on the Los Angeles Unified School Board. Charter supporters say students could leave public schools that have low standardized test scores. Charter critics insist a pro-charter majority could permanently harm traditional public schools.

Sources: Times reports, ballotpedia.org District seats up for election Not up for election Challengers Challenger (Open) Monica Garcia Allison H. Polhill Nick Melvoin Kelly Gonez Steve Zimmer Ref Rodriguez Favors charter schools Does not favor charter schools 2 4 6 1 3 5 7

8 of 15 City Council positions

More than half the City Council is up for reelection — enough to reshape priorities for development, taxes and city services.

3 1 5 9 11 13 15 7 Running unopposed Running with opposition Open seat L.A. city council elections Bob Blumenfield Gilbert Cedillo Paul Koretz Curren D. Price Jr. Mike Bonin Mitch <<<<<<< HEAD O'Farrell ======= O'Farrel >>>>>>> 0e6834ee2ae19b74afd7cce1b6b55b35c5002a07 Joe Buscaino (open) District Sources: Times reports, ballotpedia.org

Funding a fix to L.A.'s homeless problem

Measure H proposes a countywide quarter-cent sales tax for 10 years to combat homelessness. More than 43,000 homeless people live in Los Angeles County, according to a 2016 Times report mapping the county's homeless.

Los Angeles County SantaMonica DowntownLos Angeles

The future of L.A. development

The hotly contested Measure S ballot initiative would restrict certain types of new development across the city. It would bar developers from receiving permission to build projects higher or denser than city rules allow for at least two years. Supporters and opponents have each spent millions of dollars on the measure.

People don’t care about
mayoral elections like they used to

In the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s, voters got off their couches, out of their cars and made their way to the ballot box. By the ’80s enthusiasm for civic engagement faded. Ever since — with the exception of one notable runoff election that Eric Garcetti won in 2013 — more than half of voters stayed home.

Percent of registered voters who did not vote in mayoral elections

Primary election
Runoff election
Recall election
10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80% 2010 1910 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80% 2010 1910 Primaryelections Runoffelections Runoffelections Percent of registered voters who did not vote 200982% didnot vote 200982% didnot vote 196924% didnot vote 196924% didnot vote
10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80% 2010 1910 Primary Runoff % of registered voters who did not vote

Who stays home and who shows up?

Poor communities with large numbers of residents who are ineligible to vote, such as immigrants, are most likely to stay away from the polls. About 93% of voters in Watts didn’t vote in 2013. Upper-income voters are more likely to make it to the ballot box. The upper-income coastal enclave of Pacific Palisades had the fewest voters who stayed home with 66%.