Mailbag: Change to charter is political overreach in H.B.
As a resident of Huntington Beach, I am deeply concerned about the City Council’s four conservative members, including our mayor, who want to seize control of municipal elections. There have been a few poorly organized public meetings addressing how the city would either work with the Orange County Registrar of Voters to accomplish this or work completely independently of the Orange County Registrar of Voters to run our elections. The latter is even more disturbing. Given how disorganized and uninformed the four council members are about either process, it makes me wonder how my vote will be handled in future elections. During these meetings, the vast majority of residents who attended vehemently opposed this move. The public is concerned about the expense (estimated at $400,000 to $1,000,000) that would be required to add the proposed charter amendment to the March primary ballot, as well as the ongoing cost to add voter ID administration, new polling places, drop box monitoring, cameras for drop box locations, extra poll workers and more. Yet there have been no reported incidents of voter fraud either in Huntington Beach or Orange County! Plus, most voters now vote by mail-in ballot. Why should Huntington Beach undergo this madness when there’s no reason other than the conservative majority’s MAGA-driven paranoia about voter fraud?
The Orange County Registrar of Voters has one of the best reputations in the country for managing secure and safe elections. In fact, it was awarded the ISO 9001:2015 certification, an internationally recognized standard that ensures its services meet the needs of stakeholders using an effective quality management system. It is rare for government institutions to receive this high level of certification, which is typically applied in leading private industries.
I urge our City Council to withdraw its proposal to place this charter amendment on the March ballot.
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