CITY OF SANTA MONICA

 

ELECTORAL PROCESS - FACT SHEET

 

                                    MAY 14, 2007 - COMMUNITY MEETING

 

City Demographics:

 

Population:                             86,391 (2000 Census)

Registered Voters:               57,455 (November 2006 election)

Voter Turnout:                        60% (November 2006 election)

 

Voter turnout in other cities:

 

City                                     Election date                  Percentage

 

Alhambra                               Nov 06                                    42.3%

Beverly Hills                           Mar 07                                    31.1%

Carson                                   Mar 07                                    18.8%

City of Los Angeles  May 05                                   33.94%

Culver City                             Apr 06                                    21.9%

Glendale                                 Apr 07                                    25.3%

Hawthorne                              Nov 05                                    42.0%

Lakewood                              Mar 07                                    12.0%

Torrance                                 June 06                                  37.0%

Santa Barbara                       Nov 05                                    56.0%

 

Existing Local Campaign Reforms:

 

-           No filing fees for measures/initiatives

-           Campaign statement filing requirements during the signature-gathering

            period for measures/initiatives

-           Distribution of election information sheet requirement during signature-          

      gathering period, for measures and candidates

 

Candidates for City Office Regulations (estimated cost to the City of $15,000 per candidate):

 

-           $250 contribution limit

-           No candidate filing fees

-           Free printing and translating of candidate statement

-           Free airing of candidate information, interviews, and debates on CityTV

-           Free space on City's website for candidates' statement

 

Campaign Regulations:  

 

Rights of expression and association protect participation in the political process.  This makes it difficult for state and local governments to regulate contributions and expenditures even when they attempt to do so for good reasons such as equalizing opportunities and fighting corruption. 

 

Contribution Limits:

 

- Contributions to candidates and their committees may be limited.

- Contributions to committees making independent expenditures on 

   behalf of candidates are likely not subject to limitation.

- Cities cannot limit contributions to groups supporting or opposing

   local initiatives and referenda.

- Contribution limits must be established with care.

           

Expenditure Limits:

 

-          Mandatory expenditure limits are highly problematic.  Various kinds of

     limits have been found to impermissibly interfere with rights to express

     one’s views, to freely associate and to petition the government.

- Voluntary expenditure limits are much less problematic.