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Santa Barbara City Councilwoman Leader In Race For Mayor; Voters Approving Sales Tax Hike


It was Election Day in a South Coast city Tuesday, and a Santa Barbara City Councilwoman is the leader in the race to become the city’s next mayor.

Cathy Murillo has 27% of the vote in the field of five candidates for the post, while fellow council member Frank Hotchkiss is in second with 24% of the vote.

Those numbers are based on the ballots received by the city before Tuesday night’s 8 p.m. deadline. But, because it’s a vote by mail election, ballots will still be coming in and counted for the next few days.

In the three city council races, Kristen Sneddon is the District 4 leader with 49% of the vote. In District 5, Eric Friedman has 54% of the vote, to Warner McGrew’s 46%. And, in District 6, incumbent Gregg Hart appears to have won a new term with 56% of the vote.

The city’s voters apparently approved Measure C, which would raise the city’s sales tax by one percent, from 7.75% to 8.75% to raise an estimated $22 million dollars annual to fund needed city infrastructure maintenance. It received a 55% yes vote, while needing a bare majority to pass.