Understanding Orange County's Political Structure

Orange County, California is a vibrant and diverse region with a complex political structure. The City Council is made up of six members and a directly elected mayor. These councilors are elected by district for a four-year term, with mandates staggered to ensure continuity. The election of city councilors is non-partisan and members serve part-time.

No member may serve more than two consecutive terms or eight consecutive years. Residents of Orange County are represented by the Board of Supervisors, comprised of five Board members who are elected by voters in their district. The Orange County Municipal Water District (MWDOC) is responsible for managing the water supply for all municipalities in Orange County, except Anaheim, Fullerton and Santa Ana. The mayor of Orange County is elected by all citizens of the county, including those from Orlando, Apopka, Bay Lake, Belle Isle, Eatonville, Edgewood, Lake Buena Vista, Maitland, Oakland, Ocoee, Windermere, Winter Garden and Winter Park. The mayor oversees public safety operations for residents and the more than 75 million annual visitors, and budget allocations for the Orange County Public Library System, the Sheriff's Office and other constitutional offices. The Irvine Ranch Water District Board of Directors is a five-member board responsible for establishing water policy for central Orange County. The Orange County Registrar of Voters is proud to be a leader in the national and international electoral community.

The Orange County Water District (OCWD) manages the water supply for Anaheim, Fullerton and Santa Ana. The members of the Orange County Board of Commissioners are independently elected from six districts and serve in legislative functions. A seven-member board of directors oversees the MWDOC and each member is elected for a four-year term to represent a geographical region of Orange County. Orange County has five supervisors who are elected by the district for four-year terms with a two-term limit. The mission of Orange County is to make it a safe, healthy and satisfying place to live, work and play today and for future generations. This is achieved by providing outstanding and cost-effective regional public services.