One of the benefits of regular elections is to hold our public officials accountable to “we the people.” That is why Elrawd MacLearn is working hard to campaign against the incumbent County Clerk/Recorder/Assessor. In this effort on March 28, 2022, Mr. MacLearn sent a formal challenge to debate Joe Holland. As of the time of this letter, April 7, no response has been received from the incumbent.

In fact, a debate between the candidates for Clerk/Recorder/Assessor would be a historical event given that in his 20 years in office, only one candidate has ever stepped up to run against him. Furthermore, until now, no one has ever challenged the incumbent to debate. Mr. MacLearn is the only one. Will he soon become the first to be refused a debate by the incumbent?

With ballots coming out in May, Mr. MacLearn intends to address the issues that concern the voters of Santa Barbara County in a public forum with his opponent sometime in April. Will the voters be afforded such an opportunity? Or will Mr. Holland remain silent on issues of government transparency, public access, election integrity, or property tax relief during economically debilitating times?

Lisa Sloan is campaign manager for Elrawd MacLearn.


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