LB City Elections November 3, 2020

2020 Election Results: (view full results here)
City Council: Incumbent Bob Whalen and newly elected resident George Weiss
City Clerk: Ann Marie McKay

Candidates’ information and statements Here
PACs and Local Organizations Campaign Support Here
Candidate Financial Support Recap-Here


Thank you for being an informed voter. Our city’s health and future depends on it!

Laguna Beach Residents – our local leaders affect our daily lives.

Our elected officials represent US.They represent our values, our lifestyle, our space and place within our city, county, state and country. They become our face and our voice.

A council position is the most important, influential and powerful position in our City. It is critical that we understand the broad range of experience and expertise needed for this position and that we select the right individuals to work together to lead.

As we consider the candidate choices in this 2020 election, it is important that we take the time to learn all we can about each candidate before considering them as a top-level public office representative for our City.

Elected Officials Roles and Responsibilities

The responsibilities of our local elected officials include dictating local laws, policies and budgets. This person(s) will make decisions about our money, ocean, properties, roads, trees, traffic, businesses, safety, and quality of life in everything that we see, live and breathe every day.

As important as this responsibility is, local individuals are often elected by voters who know very little about their personal lives, professional occupation experience, successes or failures, interpersonal skills, visionary and leadership skills, and most important their ability to oversee a complicated city government’s operations, assets, multimillion dollar annual budget and other financial and legal activities.

The folks we elect are game-changers. It is up to us to determine if they are the right fit by evaluating their ability to meet our needs. We must explore their qualifications and history with every bit of scrutiny we would give to anyone holding our destiny in their hands because the consequences are great. Their education, experience and success will move us forward, or quite possible risk us becoming stagnant or going backwards.

We must keep in mind that this isn’t a volunteer position or a social membership. It is a paid position with benefits and the person hired to fill it will be in a decision making capacity that will impact our futures. 

Click here for CC compensation/benefits.

Like many of us, individuals who run for CC will be our friends and/or acquaintances. For some, this poses a loyalty issue. We encourage you dig deep this election and ask yourself objective questions such as;

  • Do I continue the status quo in every election? 
  • Do I take the time to find representatives that have proven their value to the community? 
  • Do I elect individuals that have proven they can make sound and logical decisions on my behalf? 
  • Am I pleased with the position and direction my City is going in?
  • Have I reviewed the incumbents voting records?  Do I agree with them a reasonable percentage of time?
  • Have the incumbents listened to the majority of constituents?
  • Do the incumbents lean towards special interest groups?   
  • Do I elect an individual based upon professional eligibility and proven performance ad success or do I elect only friends I know? 

Sounds so simple, right? It’s not. It’s time consuming and often confusing.

Sadly, local voter numbers are in decline. This is hard to understand since local elections give voters the greatest voice and opportunity to be heard. Our local officials are elected to represent the majority, and when a large fraction chooses not to vote, small groups rule and thus bias is prevalent. This hurts us all.

Get Involved. Local elections take place every year and they have long lasting implications.

By choosing the most experienced, trustworthy and transparent representatives, voters can help create and pass laws reflective of how we feel. Local politicians play a major role in all of the decisions that have a direct influence on our day-to-day lives. Our laws, streets, safety, education, thriving and healthy communities are influenced by their ability to leverage our tax dollars and make good financial decisions for us.

Our local elected officials decide how our public safety is managed. They have input as to how our police officers are trained and ensure that self-policing is in place and monitored. Sometimes local citizens take action to make their voices heard as well as keeping the check and balances needed so the majority of interests do not take over.

They’re involved in guiding voters to pass bills that can take precedence over national law. A perfect example of local power overriding national laws can be witnessed in the reform in the use of marijuana in California when voters chose to make marijuana legal for medical or recreational purposes. Supported by local voters, this has had substantial local impacts in each state creating long-lasting effects on economies, legal systems and more. 

Our local politics can shape federal policy. When you elect officials who support the causes you believe in, you become part of making a change at a state level. As states address issues and revise their laws some eventually are adopted at the federal level. The Federal government often waits to see how the new law evolves at the state level to determine its value. They may also nullify state laws if they choose. Our elected officials become our voice at all levels of government.

This election year, we have 5 City Council candidates – 2 are incumbents.  LBCHAT has included individual candidate information and any/all public information documents the may provide you with more insight into each candidate.

Candidate Public Forums:
Stu News Article – Laguna Beach Candidate Forums available here
August 24, 2020 Village Laguna and Laguna Summit Candidate Forum here
September 24, 2020 Canyon Alliance of Neighborhoods Defense Organization(CANDO) Candidate Form here
Laguna Beach Arts Alliance on September 26. For their Forum please request information directly from their website here
Greater Laguna Beach GOP candidates’ forum online on September 30. For their Forum please request information directly from their website here
The South Laguna Civic Association candidates’ forum online on October 5 here
Radio station KX FM 104.7 and the Laguna Beach Chamber of Commerce will present a virtual forum at 5:30 p.m. on October 9. For their Forum please request information directly from their website here

City Council Candidates:
Bob Whalen / Incumbent* SOQ and Disclosure Forms
Steve Dicterow / Incumbent* SOQ and Disclosure Forms
Ruben Flores SOQ and Disclosure Forms
George Weiss SOQ and Disclosure Forms
Larry Nokes SOQ and Disclosure Forms

City Clerk Candidates:
Ann Marie McKay SOQ and Disclosure Forms
Mariann Tracy SOQ and Disclosure Forms

Political Action Committees (PAC): Disclosure Forms
Laguna Residents First (LRF) PAC
Liberate Laguna (LL) PAC
Village Laguna (VL) PAC
LB FIrefighter’s Association PAC
LB Police Employee Association PAC
Laguna Public Recreational Facilities Conservancy (LPRFC)(PAC)

OTHER: Individual Reported 2020 Campaign Contributions
Sam Goldstein – 2020 campaign contribution 24 hour report Disclosure Forms

CC Candidate Public Background Records – ELECTION 2020
LBChat provides candidate personal and professional information to assist voters in
vetting individuals seeking public office in Laguna Beach.

LBCHAT will publish all public documents related to public office campaigning including:
candidate qualification statements, campaign finance disclosure forms and related
financial information, websites/podcasts, candidate forums, news articles and personal
and professional public information obtained from candidates and through public
information sources. In addition, a Laguna Beach Police contact report listing: arrests,
restraining orders, repossessions and other violations will be obtained in accordance
with the California Public Record Act. Code# 6253 (CPRA)


LBCHAT Election Archives
2018 Election link Includes incumbent Toni Iseman election candidate information.
2016 Election link Includes incumbents Whalen and Dicterow election candidate information.

CHAT stands for City Hall Accountability and Transparency. Our Mission: Laguna Beach
CHAT desires to advance accountability and transparency. We serve residents by
providing them with an open and honest platform to gain knowledge about City officials,
functions and decisions that impact our quality of life and our local community.
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Liberate Laguna Backers File Campaign Finance Complaint