Votes still needed in uncontested Rancho Santa Fe Association election

Only two candidates remain for the two available seats in the Rancho Santa Fe Association board election, as Sharon Ruhnau has dropped out. Rick Sapp and Stephen Dunn will be on the ballot for next month’s election — a meet-the-candidates and question-and-answer session will be held at the RSF Association’s Annual Meeting Thursday, May 11 at 5 p.m. at the Rancho Santa Fe Garden Club.

Despite the uncontested election, RSF Association Assistant Manager Christy Whalen underscored the importance of residents casting their votes. An error in the last round of bylaw changes increased the quorum required for the election from 75 to 600 property votes.

If the election fails, they will have to hold another election or directors will have to resign to appoint the new directors.

Director Allen Finkelson said the quorum mistake will be corrected in the next round of bylaw changes that members will be asked to vote on. In the correction, the quorum will be changed from one-third of the residents to 250 properties.

During public comment, resident Deb Plummer said she was sorry to hear that Ruhnau had dropped out of the race and wondered if the Association would consider forming a recruiting committee to try and get more people interested and enthusiastic about running for the board.

RSF Association board member Mike Licosati agreed that the Association especially needs to build enthusiasm for candidates in his demographic, the 33 percent of residents who have children in the home.

“In my cohort there’s a real reluctance to run because we always get defeated,” Licosati said, noting only 10 percent of board members at the RSF Association, RSF Golf Club and RSF Tennis Club are in that demographic and the few that serve have been appointed not elected. “Younger residents are vastly under-represented and that’s going to lead to a long-term problem in the community because their voices aren’t being heard.”

For those interested in getting involved, there are currently two vacancies on the Association’s finance and audit committee. Applications are due by May 1 and will be followed by interviews on May 17. The new committee members will then be appointed in June.

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