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Morgan Hill
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August 10, 2022

MHUSD to welcome new trustee

The MHUSD Board of Education is set to swear in a new trustee, as Ivan Rosales Montes appears to be headed for victory in the Trustee Area 5 seat.

Local student is finalist in special districts video contest

A Sobrato High School student is in the running to win a scholarship prize for a video that aims to educate voters about special districts.

Measure RR would raise $100M annually for Caltrain

Measure RR on the Nov. 3 ballot is a one-eighth-cent sales tax that would be levied for 30 years in order to help “save” Caltrain, the commuter train line that runs between Gilroy and San Francisco, according to supporters.

Hendrickson becomes first candidate to enter Persky recall election

Cindy Seeley Hendrickson, a candidate who recently opened a campaign to replace Judge Aaron Persky in the potential recall election in June 2018, will be on hand for a community meet-and-greet at 5pm tonight at Huntington Station. (50 E. Third St.)

Letter to the editor: District elections are an insult

I would like to join the many voters in Morgan Hill that agree with John McKay’s “Our Town” commentary (from the Sept. 15 edition of the Morgan Hill Times) regarding district elections. Not only is district voting a travesty, but it is an insult to every voter in our city!We do not need to be told how to vote or who to vote for. The fact is, our city council has enjoyed amazing representation of the diversity of Morgan Hill. When we had a choice to vote someone out of council and vote for a new candidate, we did. This district voting scheme is just that: another way for losing candidates to force themselves on the voting public!Look at what has happened at the Morgan Hill Unified School District! In the last election, we had one district with only one candidate, because other very qualified candidates lived outside that district.District elections narrow our choices and may very well force the voters to send an unqualified candidate to office.On the MHUSD board, we have a split board that rarely, if ever agrees with one another, and we have a board member that we know very little about that ran unopposed from her district. We, in Morgan Hill, deserve better than this on our school board and at city council!Please don’t insult our intelligence with district elections and term limits. Let the voters decide who is best qualified and aligns with our values in order to address the complicated issues we face.This insult is being forced upon us because of a few losers that ran and did not win want an advantage to their losing cause.A threat of a lawsuit is a challenge, not a reason to roll over and give these losers an advantage. Shame on us!Ever Onward,Swanee EdwardsMorgan Hill

City council, board of supes continue to play it safe with remote meetings

Most elected government bodies, councils and boards in the Bay Area have resumed in-person meetings as vaccination rates have climbed and Covid-19 pandemic restrictions have eased. But the Morgan Hill City Council and Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors are among the few remaining holdouts,...

City Council inches toward new districts

The Morgan Hill City Council has narrowed down its potential new district boundaries to a choice of five draft maps, but officials disagree on whether all of them would stand up to state laws regulating the electoral redistricting process. In recent months, the council and...

By-district elections: City creates new website, schedules July 10 workshop

City officials posted a new website containing interactive maps, meeting and workshop schedules and information devoted to the upcoming switch to a by-district election system for electing city council members.The website, found at drawmh.org, allows residents and voters to participate in the effort to create four council districts within the city limits. The section titled “Draw a Map” allows voters to propose their own preferred district boundaries that reflect the area or areas they think should be represented by a single elected official.An “Interactive Map Viewer” features layers of data such as the boundaries of individual U.S. Census population units within the city limits, and the number of residents within each unit. Draft maps, to be created in the coming weeks with input gathered from the public and a professional demographer, will be posted to the website.The site, which can be viewed in English and Spanish, also gives voters instructions on how to draw a proposed district map—on paper or electronically—and submit it to city officials.“The primary goal when drawing council election districts is to draw lines that keep neighborhoods together. So the council wants to know: what do you consider the boundaries of your neighborhood?” reads the “Welcome” section of the website.The next chance for voters to interact in person with city officials regarding the effort to draw new council districts will be at a July 10 community workshop, from 7 to 9 p.m. at City Council meeting chambers, 17555 Peak Ave.Under the by-district election system, each district will be represented by a single council member who resides within that district. Voters within each district will elect only one council member to represent them.This is a stark change from the at-large system that has elected council members for the last 100-plus years. Under that system, all voters throughout Morgan Hill could vote on every council seat that was up for election, regardless of where in the city each candidate lived.The council voted June 7 to make the change to a by-district system, in response to a “demand letter” from an Oakland law firm denouncing the at-large system as being in violation of the California Voting Rights Act. By adopting the change, the council is taking advantage of legal protections that limit the damages and costs that can be claimed in a potential civil rights lawsuit.The by-district system will start November 2018, when two seats—currently occupied by Councilman Rich Constantine and Councilwoman Caitlin Jachimowicz—will be up for grabs. The other two seats—now held by Mayor Pro Tem Larry Carr and Councilman Rene Spring—will be subject to the by-district change when they next appear on the ballot in November 2020.The mayor of Morgan Hill will continue to be elected at large under the change, according to city staff and drawmh.org. The mayor serves a two-year term.The May 2 demand letter from Oakland law firm Goldstein, Borgen, Dardarian & Ho, alleges that the current at-large system results in “vote dilution” and prevents under-represented groups such as Latino voters from “influencing the results of elections.”The city council has held two public hearings—on June 21 and June 28—on the election system change since it was adopted.At the June 28 meeting, Douglas Johnson, President of the National Demographics Corporation, gave a presentation about NDC’s proposal to offer mapping and demographic services to the city during the transition to a by-district system.Public meetings and workshops on the subject will continue until Aug. 23, when the council is expected to adopt official district maps created with input from the voters and NDC.NDC has recently offered similar services to the Morgan Hill Unified School District, when its seven-member board of trustees voted to change to a by-district election system in 2015, also under threat of a lawsuit. It has also offered redistricting services for the Santa Clara Valley Water District.The company’s contract with the City of Morgan Hill cost $43,000.

Resident says councilmember ‘harassed’ husband

A Morgan Hill resident has publicly accused a city council member of verbally accosting him at a recent public event, although perceptions of the incident differ among those who were involved or witnessed it.  During public comment at the June 15 Morgan Hill City Council...

Downtown lane reduction measure goes to Nov. 8 ballot

Morgan Hill’s voters will get to decide in the Nov. 8 election if any future attempt to reduce the number of lanes of Monterey Road through the city’s downtown should be determined by a popular citywide vote. But it’s possible the city council will implement...

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