Chula Vista

Chula Vista Voters May Have to Cast Another Ballot for City Attorney

Chula Vista may need to hold a special election in 2023 to fill the City Attorney's office.

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Chula Vista voters may soon have to cast another ballot in the race for City Attorney. The leading vote-getter so far died in September and would have to be replaced.

As of Wednesday afternoon, Democrat Simon Silva leads Republican Dan Smith by fewer than 700 votes even though Silva died in September after a second battle with cancer. The San Diego County Registrar of Voters website said there are still 11,000 ballots countywide still to be counted before the November election is certified on Dec. 8.

“If Simon Silva ends up winning the election there will absolutely need to be a special election,” said current Chula Vista City Attorney Glen Googins.

Googins said voters paved the way for how that special election might look by overwhelmingly passing Measure K in the same election. K updates the city’s charter. It also allows Chula Vista to use a mail-in ballot for a special election.

“Elections are very expensive, and the estimates are that a mail-in ballot version of an election would save between 15% and 20% over conventional balloting,” explained Googins.

It could equate to hundreds of thousands of dollars in savings.

“The County Registrar has given an estimate of anywhere between $1.5 and 2 million,” he continued. “That number could go down if it’s a mail ballot election.”

Googins said the new Chula Vista City Council will be given options for a special election on Dec. 13.

When that election takes place and what type of election that will be up to them and their discretion.

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