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How to Run for City Council in Hayward, California

3 min read
Hayward Politics Team · Nov 9, 2023

Embarking on a City Council campaign can be an incredibly rewarding way to contribute positively to your hometown. This step-by-step guide is designed to help you navigate the journey of campaigning for City Council in the vibrant city of Hayward, California.

Hayward, California: A Bay Area Gem

Before we dive into the specifics of the role and the election process, let's take a moment to appreciate Hayward itself. Nestled in the Bay Area, Hayward is a city that boasts a diverse tapestry of neighborhoods, each with its own unique vibe. It's a place where community spirit shines, with a rich cultural heritage and a commitment to inclusivity. The city is known for its scenic beauty, from the lush greenery of its parks to the panoramic views of the San Francisco Bay. The residents of Hayward have recently been focused on addressing the challenges of affordable housing, ensuring public safety, and fostering sustainable development to meet the needs of their growing population.

Understanding the Role of City Council

City Council members are the cornerstone of local governance, tasked with shaping policies and making decisions that have a direct impact on the day-to-day lives of citizens. They are the legislative backbone of the city, often responsible for appointing key officials like the city manager. Here are some basic facts about the City Council in Hayward:

  • What does the City Council do? As the legislative arm of the city, the Council is in charge of passing laws, setting policies, and sometimes, selecting a city manager.

  • Is the City Council a local, state, or national position? This role is at the city level, where you can make a tangible difference locally.

  • Is City Council a partisan or nonpartisan position? It's a role that transcends party lines, focusing on nonpartisan leadership.

  • What is the typical salary for serving on Hayward’s City Council? In Hayward, you can expect to earn around $25,000 a year for your service.

Qualifications to Run for City Council

Wondering if you've got what it takes to run for office? Here's what you need to know about qualifying for a run at City Council in Hayward:

You'll need to have been a resident and a registered voter in Hayward or its annexed territories for at least a year before your election.

Candidates for City Council must also pay a modest filing fee and gather signatures from 20 to 30 local voters.

Your candidacy paperwork should be filed at 1225 Fallon St, Rm G-1, Oakland, CA 94612. If you need to connect, give the filing office a call at 510-272-6973. Paperwork goes to the county registrar of voters' office.

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How the City Council Is Elected

Let's break down the election process for City Council:

  • When is the next election for City Council? Mark your calendars for the General Election on November 5, 2024.

  • How often is the City Council elected? Every four years, the community gets to choose their City Council members.

For more details on elections, your go-to resource is the local government's website.

Steps to Run for City Council in Hayward

Ready to hit the campaign trail? Here's your blueprint for a successful City Council campaign:

  1. Understand your community’s needs and context. Immerse yourself in Hayward's history and current issues to truly connect with voters.

  2. Create a detailed campaign plan. Assemble a team that complements your strengths and strategize on how to best engage with the electorate.

  3. Complete all filing requirements. Plan out how you'll gather the necessary signatures to run for office and manage the financial aspects of your campaign.

  4. Develop effective campaign messaging. The heart of your campaign is clear, consistent communication, with a message that resonates with Hayward residents.

  5. Build a strong online presence. A user-friendly website and active social media can be game-changers for your campaign.

  6. Engage in voter outreach. Hit the streets, send texts, and host events to get your message out to the voters.

  7. Rally volunteers around your campaign. Energize your supporters to spread the word and get involved.

  8. Get out the vote. Turnout is key, so motivate as many people as possible to make their voices heard at the General Election.

Reasons to Run for City Council

Why throw your hat in the ring for City Council? Here are some compelling reasons to consider:

  • Running for City Council gives you a chance to represent your community. You'll be able to address the needs of Hayward's residents and ensure they're heard in the halls of power.

  • Running for City Council lets you advocate for key issues. From improving affordable housing to enhancing sustainability in Hayward, this is your chance to champion the causes close to your heart.

  • Running for City Council gives voters more choice. Your candidacy can shake up the status quo, offering a fresh alternative to incumbent officeholders.

Campaigning for City Council is more than a political pursuit; it's a way to give back and ensure a thriving democratic process in Hayward.

Resources to Help You Run for City Council

Thinking of running for City Council? is on hand to support you every step of the way, from your initial decision to the big day. We're all about empowering candidates who step outside the traditional party system, providing free tools and resources to help you run a successful nonpartisan campaign. Reach out today and discover how's free tools and support can supercharge your City Council campaign.

To become part of's growing community and connect with other independent candidates, you can also join's Discord server.

Photo by Vijayalakshmi Nidugondi on Unsplash

Planning a run for office?

Meet our team for a free consultation about launching your campaign
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How to Run for Office
By Politics Team
The politics team is focused on transforming the political landscape by promoting transparency, accountability, and positive change. They aim to engage citizens in the political process, encourage informed decision-making, and support candidates who prioritize the common good. Their mission revolves around creating a more fair and just political system, fostering collaboration, and breaking down traditional barriers of partisanship.