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JILL RICHARDSON, Dana Point

Just because three candidates are running unopposed for Dana Point City Council this election cycle does not mean I, or other Dana Point residents, are not engaged with Dana Point local government.

I believe that changing our voting from at-large to district elections in 2018 has limited the voters’ power in local elections. I attended the election redistricting meetings and witnessed how quickly the redistricting map was voted in.

And here we are four years later, with three districts having only one candidate running unopposed. To me, the current four districts’ voting system has disenfranchised the vote here. I want to vote in our local elections every year. And I want every resident in Dana Point to vote, and our elected officials to encourage everyone to vote every election cycle.

Businesses usually contribute to PACs, and PACs don’t have to report their donors so, in effect, businesses can contribute anonymously to certain people. I want transparency to PACs’ contributions for each councilmember.

I live in District 4, and I remember a slick postcard full of smears and mistruths about the opposing candidate for my area (funded by a PAC out of Sacramento) that arrived in my mailbox the week before the 2020 elections.

It is alarming to me how big business and the power of money are entangled with our local elections. I want money limits and transparency to PAC money for our local officials who are running or working for our city government, ASAP. 

Some people say there’s nothing that can be done about PAC money, but it’s apparent that greed has taken over the power of the vote. Therefore, more must be done to encourage voting.

And I hope that every person will vote, in every election. Your vote matters here in our city.

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