Students and local residents looking to surf their way to some important information about the upcoming local election can now log on to a new online forum dedicated to sharing all the details about the candidates for 2nd District supervisor.

Citizens Planning Foundation (CPF) Executive Director Naomi Kovacs said the forum is designed to provide a place where local voters can see the candidates’ qualifications, as well as where they stand on major issues facing the county. Voters can access the forum by visiting and clicking on the link to the 2006 2nd District Supervisor Candidates Web Forum.

Kovacs said CPF – a local non-profit organization dedicated to informing the public about environmental and development issues affecting Santa Barbara County – often hosts live forums before big local elections. She said CPF has gotten feedback from local voters who said they have difficulty attending the live forums, and she thinks the website will make it easy for local voters to learn about the candidates at their convenience.

“Anybody who lives in the 2nd District should take part in voting,” Kovacs said. “We always do live forums, but not everyone can attend them. So, at any time, day or night, voters can visit the web forum to see where their candidates stand.”

The four candidates who have officially confirmed their candidacy for 2nd District supervisor are Joe Guzzardi, Dan Secord, Das Williams and Janet Wolf. The web forum includes a brief statement from each of the candidates about what they think are the most significant issues currently facing the county.

Williams said he is enthusiastic about the web forum, and he said he hopes it will enable UCSB students and staff to learn about the elections before voting.

“I am thrilled [because] it’s free for people that want the information,” Williams said. “The faculty, staff and students of UCSB will have a great advantage because their participation [affects] what will happen within their community.”

Kovacs said CPF is also planning a small online forum about the county split – a proposal to divide the county in half as a solution to issues such as heavy traffic and economic problems – in the near future.