ASB Hosts Azusa Voter's Forum

by Jody Godoy '05

On Wednesday, February 26, students, staff, faculty, and members of the Azusa community gathered in Upper Turner Campus Center for a Candidate Forum for the municipal elections. Sponsored by the Associated Student Body, the forum featured all of the mayoral candidates in the running, as well as three of the four city council candidates.
The forum began with an opening statement from each candidate, in which they expressed what they had to offer the city. All the candidates expressed appreciation that the students had taken an interest in municipal affairs, and stressed the importance of APU students taking part in the elections as citizens of Azusa. Mayor Cristina Cruz-Madrid said that she saw "a future generation of leaders" in the students who had taken the time to become educated regarding the election.

A series of prewritten questions gave each candidate the opportunity to describe their standpoint on city issues, including how to bring more retail outlets into the city, the affects of the proposed utility tax on students and local businesses, and the implications of the Monrovia Nursery Project, a plan to develop the land into a residential area. When asked what intangible benefits a university brings to a town, and what benefits APU specifically brings to Azusa, candidates mentioned the community services and economic support for businesses provided by students, and the reputation gained from APU's international recognition. They also described some additional contributions they hoped to see APU make in future.

Those who attended the forum came away, as Political Science major and mayoral candidate Todd Afshar '05 and the other candidates hoped they would, "a little more educated as to who's running," and with a clearer picture of the differences their votes can make for APU and its neighbors.

On Election Day, 1,750 Azusa residents reelected Mayor Christina Cruz-Madrid. Her closest runner up was Todd Afshar, who received 1,043 votes. Diane Chagnon and David Hardison won seats on the Azusa City Council with 2,010 votes and 1,903 votes respectively. For more election results information, click here.