Election day attracted about double the usual number of voters this year, according to Long Beach City Clerk’s office, with voter participation coming in at 39.7 percent in the General Municipal Election and 40.12 percent for the California Statewide Primary Election, compared to the decade average of 20 percent.
According to the City Clerk’s office, the citywide election to garner the next-highest turnout occurred in 2006, when 28.9 percent of voters turned out to vote. The last election, in April and June 2014, resulted in 17.5 and 20.8 percent voter turnout, respectively.
“This is a great achievement for the voters in the City of Long Beach and for our local democracy,” said City Clerk de la Luz Garcia in a statement.
Notably, in January 2016, the Long Beach City Council voted to collaborate with the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder County Clerk’s office to streamline the June municipal election.
The partnership allowed for voters to cast votes for both statewide and city elections in the same polling station, as well as for both ballots to be received at a single sign-in table. LA County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk Dean Logan said the previous system in place in Long Beach was not in the best interest of the voter, as it caused confusion and in some cases created the burden of having to travel to multiple polling locations to cast votes on the same day.
“Instead of the past concurrent election or what’s commonly been known as 'Two Vote Tuesday' election here in Long Beach, we’ll be able to deliver a voting experience to Long Beach voters where they will feel like they’re voting in a single election in June, which I feel serves all of us well,” Logan said.
This year’s General Municipal Election for the Second District resulted in the victory of Jeannine Pearce, who won with 51.45 percent of the over 11,000 votes cast. At its city council meeting last week, the results of the election were certified official.