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Elena Baca-Santa Cruz appears to win Moreno Valley City Council election

Portrait of Elena Baca-Santa Cruz
Courtesy of Elena Baca-Santa Cruz
Portrait of Elena Baca-Santa Cruz

With almost all ballots counted, it appears that Elena Baca-Santa Cruz has won the special election for Moreno Valley’s District 1 City Council race.

Baca-Santa Cruz won with about 40% of the vote and will replace the spot of her mother, Victoria Baca, who passed away in October. “You know I feel proud that I'm able to continue the work that she started,” Baca-Santa Cruz said. Her mother, Victoria Baca, was the first Latina elected to the Moreno Valley School Board and City Council.

When it comes to improvements to the city, Baca-Santa Cruz emphasized the need to attract more jobs to Moreno Valley. “Because with the traffic on the freeway, we need to have local jobs so that people aren't having to get on the freeway to go to work. Because everyone has to work, but if their work was here in the city, then they wouldn't be on the freeway, and if we're not on the freeways, then we get home earlier, and we can be more involved," Baca-Santa Cruz said.

The Riverside County Registrar of Voters has at least 30 more ballots to count and will update the vote tally on April 20. Baca-Santa Cruz currently leads her nearest opponent by 90 votes.

Jonathan Linden was a reporter at 91.9 KVCR in San Bernardino, California. He joined KVCR in July 2021 and served with the station till October 2022.