CANDIDATE STATEMENT OF QUALIFICATIONS

OVERVIEW (Elections Code 13307)

  • Each candidate for nonpartisan elective office in any local agency, including any city, county, or district may prepare a Candidate's Statement. All must file a Candidate’s Statement Agreement indicating if a statement will be filed or not.
  • The Candidate's Statement is designed to acquaint voters with candidates' qualifications for the office they are seeking.
  • The Statement is printed in the Voter’s Information Pamphlet section of the county Sample Ballot mailed to all registered voters in the district eligible to vote on that particular office.
PERIOD FOR FILING:

July 17 to August 11 by 5 p.m. The statement must be paid for and filed with the Declaration of Candidacy. (13307)

EXTENDED PERIOD:

If the Nomination filing period is extended, then all persons, other than the incumbent, have until August 16, 5 p.m. in which to file their Candidate's Statement along with their Declaration of Candidacy.

WHERE:

Elections Department, 701 Ocean Street, Room 210, Santa Cruz, CA 95060-4076, 831-454-2060. Regular office hours - 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Candidate's Statements cannot be filed by FAX.

CONTENTS:

The statement contains the candidate's:

  • name
  • age (optional)
  • occupation (optional), and
  • a brief description of no more than 200 words (unless 400 has been authorized by the governing board) of the candidate's education and qualifications expressed by the candidate.
RESTRICTIONS:

The candidate's statement shall not include the party affiliation of the candidate nor membership or activity in partisan political organizations.

CONFIDENTIALITY:

Statements are confidential until 5 p.m. on the last day to file. (13311)

WITHDRAWAL:

Statements may not be changed but may be withdrawn no later than 5 p.m. on August 14. If there is an extended filing time, no later than 5 p.m. on August 17.

PAYMENT:

Cost for printing a candidate's statement in the Voter’s Information Pamphlet shall be paid at the time of filing the statement with the Declaration of Candidacy. Checks are made payable to the County Clerk.

HOW TO WRITE YOUR CANDIDATE'S STATEMENT

CONTENT

  • Be accurate. Documents will be printed as submitted. SPELLING, PUNCTUATION, AND GRAMMATICAL ERRORS WILL NOT BE CORRECTED BY THE ELECTIONS DEPARTMENT.
  • Please TYPE your candidate statement C DO NOT USE ALL CAPS. Statements will be rejected if they are typed in all capital letters or if the statement is not readable. Candidates may type their statement on the form provided by the Elections Department; type it on their own paper, double-spaced only; or submit the statement on a disk along with a hard copy. Statements submitted in a readable electronic format will receive a $25 discount. If there is a discrepancy between the content of the hard copy and the content in the electronic format, the hard copy content will prevail.
  • Do not include party affiliation.
  • Statements for judicial offices may not make reference to other candidates for judicial office or to another candidate's qualifications, character, or activities. (Elections Code '13308)
  • Do no use profanity or other objectionable language.
  • The heading includes the candidate’s name and office sought. The Candidate’s Statement will begin with the words: "Education and Qualifications:" followed by the text filed by the candidate. These words, as well as the heading, are standardized and included in the quarter page space provided. The words, however, do not count toward the number of words allowed for the statement.
  • Subheadings and deviations from the standardized heading will not be accepted.
  • The "Occupation" field in the Candidate’s Statement is NOT governed by the laws and regulations pertaining to the ballot designation that appears underneath the candidate’s name on the ballot. Therefore, it may be different from the candidate’s ballot designation. However, if its length extends the statement beyond the space provided, the candidate will be charged double to print the statement.

SIZE

  • The candidate’s statement must fit inside a quarter page square of the Voter’s Information Pamphlet measuring 3.75" wide by 4.5" tall. If the statement exceeds this space, the candidate will be charged double for using an additional square. Please see example here.

FORMAT

  • All text will be formatted flush left – no indents will be allowed, except for bullets.
  • Statements are printed in the Voter’s Information Pamphlet in type of uniform size, darkness and spacing. Santa Cruz County uses 9.5 point Arial or Arial Narrow type - no exceptions.
  • Bolding, CAPITALIZING, underlining, and centering text are not permitted. If the statement contains any bolding, capitalizing (other than abbreviations or acronyms), underlining, and centering of text, the text will be converted to normal text without these attributes.
  • Limited use of italics is permitted.
  • Bullets, using a solid circle ONLY, are permitted and will be indented like the bullets on this page. If the bulleted text extends the statement beyond the space allowed, candidates will be charged double, or bullets will be removed and the text will run together, separated by a semi-colon.
  • Notwithstanding the above guidelines, nothing shall be deemed to make any statement or author of the statement free or exempt from any civil or criminal action or penalty because of any false, slanderous, or libelous statements offered for printing.

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