Matthew Harper, a first-time Huntington Beach City Council candidate, has been involved in politics in some way — and often several ways at once — since he graduated from USC.
In addition to 12 years as a trustee with the Huntington Beach Union High School District, he's represented the Republican Party at the state and county levels and served the last three years as a policy advisor to Orange County Supervisor Janet Nguyen.
As a councilman, Harper said, he would make economic development a top priority. He identified the Beach and Edinger Corridors Specific Plan, a mixed-use plan that the council approved in March, as a key area of revitalization for the city. He favors the senior center in Huntington Central Park and the proposed Poseidon desalination plant.
And though he favors development, Harper, a Realtor until taking the job with Nguyen, said one of his key priorities is ensuring that the city spends money responsibly.