Today’s forum for the candidates for Santa Barbara County superintendent of schools has been canceled by its host, the League of Women Voters of Santa Barbara.
The league said the reason was because candidate Christy Lozano would not agree to sign a release form. According to the league’s policies, the forum can’t be held unless both candidates agree to the terms of the release form.
In a news release, the league said Ms. Lozano was told, “Our policies and procedures for our Candidate Forum, such as not providing the questions to be asked of each candidate in advance, and not allowing candidates to use excerpts of the recording of the Forum rather than using it in its entirety, are in accordance with national and state League of Women Voters policies and procedures. Please be assured that all candidates who participate in our Forums are required to abide by the same policies and procedures.”
Ms. Lozano told the News-Press Wednesday night, after today’s paper went to press, that she did not decline to sign the release form. She said she was emailing questions to a league representative about the form.
“The release form was not presented to me until after they publicized the event,” Ms. Lozano said. “They were requiring restrictions on my ability to fully explain the problems in our county office of education and my solutions.”
“They suddenly gave me an arbitrary deadline (to sign the form) and then canceled the event,” Ms. Lozano said.
“To complicate matters, I was given two different versions of the release forms to sign,” Ms. Lozano told the News-Press. “I was surprised that the LWV canceled the event and was unwilling to address my concerns with any sort of healthy discussion. “
(News-Press Managing Editor Dave Mason contributed to this report.)
Dr. Susan Salcido, the incumbent, signed the form, according to the league.
The News-Press reached out to Ms. Lozano for comment but didn’t hear back before press time.
— Katherine Zehnder