June is just around the corner. Whether you’ve been itching to get politically involved or simply want to be informed about the politics of Orange County, here is what you need to know about the Orange County Municipal Primary Elections.
What are primaries?
Primaries are elections held to narrow the field of candidates for a given elective office or to determine the nominees for political parties in advance of a general election. Primaries occur on a national level but also take place locally in smaller counties, cities and states.
When will the primaries take place?
The Orange County primary elections will be held on June 5, 2018.
What positions are being voted on?
Orange County will be conducting primary elections for the board of supervisors, county assessor, district attorney-public administrator, county sheriff-coroner, county treasurer-tax collector, county superintendent of schools, county clerk-recorder and superior court judges. On a larger scale, there will be a primary for California’s governor, treasurer, lieutenant governor, Orange County’s representative for Congress and state Senate.
What do each of those positions entail?
Feeling lost? Don’t worry, here is a short breakdown of responsibilities for each role:
Orange County’s board of supervisors bear the largest authoritative role in the county’s government. This board is responsible for keeping tabs on the local government and the county’s special districts such as Orange County Fire Authority, Orange County Transportation Authority, and the Orange County Sanitation District. These districts determine the circulation, cleanliness, and safety of Orange County.
The county assessor is a local government official responsible for checking property values within county lines. This value is converted into an assessment, one component in the computation of real property tax bills. The county assessor is vital to Chapman students who are looking for affordable property as well as addressing the never-ending property value concerns that Orange County residents face.
The district attorney-public administrator oversees law enforcement, ensuring that the law is conducted and enforced in a moral and just manner.
Candidates for county sheriff-coroner will be found on the ballot as well. The coroner determines the cause, time, and place of deaths, and the job is much like what is seen on TV or in movies.
Money, and the management of money, must be in the hands of a trustworthy individual, hence the importance of a county treasurer-tax collector. The county treasurer-tax collector is responsible for financial management and tax collection in the county. A vital task of a tax collector is to manage, as well as provide funding for, schools, parks and roads.
Regarding education, the election of Orange County’s next county superintendent of schools is not to be overlooked by any means. A superintendent makes daily decisions about staff, student life and educational programs. A superintendent also holds a substantial role in the communication between the parents and staff of a given educational system, providing accommodations whilst keeping the system fair and balanced.
For long-term residents of Orange County, the preservation of privacy for records from real estate transactions is critical. The person in charge of a role like this must be responsible and extremely meticulous in order to ensure a feeling of security amongst the county’s residents. This responsibility lies within the hands of the county clerk-recorder.
Lastly, the superior court judges, members of the superior court who hold jurisdiction over the county’s cases. Whether it be a parking ticket or a criminal case, the people who make day-changing or life-changing decisions must represent the people and be just with verdicts.
While Orange County has not yet released its full list of candidates for the local primary election, many positions have already been endorsed and have gained traction. For example, candidates for governor have begun hostin campaign events and various fundraisers to promote their platforms. It is important for students to remain aware of the upcoming primary election, and stay tuned for more updates about candidates. The following candidates are the frontrunners for their respective party’s primary, and should be further researched by all voters.
National level representatives to be aware of:
Top Candidates for Orange County’s District State Senator
Top Candidates for Orange’s Congress Representatives
Main Candidates for Governor:
Antonio Villaraigosa, former Mayor of Los Angeles
Gavin Newsom, Lieutenant Governor of California
Amanda Renteria, national political director for Clinton’s 2016 campaign
John Chiang, California State Treasurer
Let your voice be heard! Register to vote in future elections online by following this link: https://registertovote.ca.gov/
For additional information on the categories and what they mean in Orange County, check out these links:
Board of Supervisors:
Orange County, California – Board of Supervisors
Orange County, California – Coroner
Tax Collector Duties & Responsibilities
Orange County, California – Clerk-Recorder – Hugh Nguyen
Superior Court Judges:
The Superior Court of California – County of Orange