May 7, 2012 - Election calendar switch urged - COUNCIL: Proposal by three members seeks to align Long Beach and state contests.
Paper: Long Beach Press-Telegram (CA)
Title: Election calendar switch urged - COUNCIL: Proposal by three members seeks to align Long Beach and state contests.
Date: May 7, 2012
Author: Eric Bradley Staff Writer
LONG BEACH - Three City Council members want to look at shifting municipal elections from April to June to streamline operations and save money.
Long Beach currently holds its primary every two years in April and the runoffs if needed in June. The state runs elections every two years in June and November.
Switching election dates would require amending the city charter.
A resolution will be introduced at Tuesday's City Council meeting requesting a Charter Amendment Committee meeting to consider a ballot measure for November that would bring the city's election cycle in line with the state schedule.
The measure, sponsored by Councilman Robert Garcia, is co-sponsored by Councilwoman Gerrie Schipske and Councilman Steve Neal.
Aligning city and state elections was last considered in 2010.
Then, the Elections Oversight Committee voted to shelve the idea after a study found drawbacks to the change that included longer campaigns, later reporting of voting results and the possible negative effects of partisan ballots on city elections, which are nonpartisan.
In other council action Tuesday, another resolution sponsored by Councilwoman Suja Lowenthal will request that City Manager Pat West develop a process to allow bicyclists who have been issued minor traffic violations to attend Bicycle Safety Traffic School and have the citations dismissed.
The legislation is co-sponsored by Garcia and Councilman Gary DeLong.
A staff report on the item said that bicycling citations such as a failure to heed a stop sign or riding at night can cost more than $200.
The change to the law would bring bicycling penalties more in line with those governing motorists, who can attend traffic school as an alternative to paying the ticket, officials say.
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