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Voters reject westside cityhood, brush back annexation to Santa Clarita

Option to remain unincorporated favored in non-binding vote

Posted: November 3, 2009 11:55 p.m.
Updated: November 4, 2009 4:55 a.m.

Turnout in the Santa Clarita Valley was low for Tuesday's election, but larger than expected in westside communities, where voters in unincorporated Los Angeles County had a chance to voice their wishes on governing the community.

 
The prospect of westside cityhood suffered a sound defeat by a three-to-one margin in Tuesday's election with 100 percent of the precincts reporting as of 12:15 a.m. Wednesday.

Returns in the non-binding vote also showed westside voters would opt by a narrow margin to remain part of unincorporated Los Angeles County over joining the city of Santa Clarita.

The advisory measures aimed to gauge voters’ feelings about the future of governance for the westside and Tesoro Del Valle.

Voters in Stevenson Ranch, Val Verde, Castaic, Sunset Pointe, Southern Oaks and Westridge were asked if they would like to form their own city, join Santa Clarita, or remain unincorporated communities. More than 2,500 votes were cast in each of the three options.

The push to remain an unincorporated area of Los Angeles County passed by 13 percentage points.

The measure to incorporate a city failed by 55 percentage points and the measure to join the city of Santa Clarita passed by slightly less than a 6-point margin.

The Measure A "yes" vote to remain unincorporated was 1,622, just 55 more than the Measure C "yes" vote to annex to the city.

Based on the 20 percent of votes reported by the county as of 10 p.m. election night, members of both the West Ranch and Castaic town councils said the mixed bag of results still makes it difficult to read the pulse of the people on the westside.

“Do we have a consensus?” asked Don Fleming, West Ranch Town Council member. “I don’t think so.”

Fleming said the close margin between voters on whether to remain in the unincorporated county area or join the city makes it difficult to determine what the voters want.

“I don’t know if (the vote) shows anything,” he said.

Renee Sabol said Tuesday's vote shows one thing is very clear.

“Obviously, no one wants to incorporate,” she said.

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