Politics

LA Elections: Report calls for date change to boost municipal voter participation (updated)

A new report by Los Angeles' top budget official recommends municipal elections be moved to coincide with state and federal races.
A new report by Los Angeles' top budget official recommends municipal elections be moved to coincide with state and federal races.
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Mark your calendars -- Los Angeles city elections could be moving to coincide with state and federal races. 

A report released Wednesday by the city's top budget official recommended the Los Angeles City Council move municipal elections to June and November of even-numbered years. Local elections are currently held in March and May of odd-numbered years. 

L.A.'s City Administrative Officer, Miguel Santana issued a report echoing recommendations approved in June by the Election Reform Commission. Turnout in last year's mayoral runoff was 23 percent. That's in contrast to the 2012 presidential election when Los Angeles County had a 69 percent turnout. The governor's 2010 election saw  a 52 percent turnout in L.A. County. 

Moving elections would alter the terms served by members of the city council and LAUSD Board of Education. "The resulting one and a half year gap between the June end date and December begin date can be addressed by either a charter change to adjust the dates of term and allow a temporary, one-time five and a half year term, or a special election, to fill the time frame," according to the report. 

The Rules and Elections Committee is scheduled to discuss the report on Friday. 

These issues will not come to the full council for a vote until the public hearings have been held. Improving voter turnout is a complicated process, and we want to proceed with careful consideration.," Council President Herb Wesson said in a statement. 

This post has been updated.