Orange County’s 2nd District Supervisor Katrina Foley gave away thousands of $100 gas cards to Orange County residents on Tuesday at Orange Coast College.
“Today we are distributing $100 gas cards for residents dealing with inflation and to help reduce the cost of living a little bit,” Foley said. “We had 3,500 people register.”
Foley’s team set up this event to help out local OC residents with the increase in gas prices, which saw an all-time high of $6.445 on Oct. 3.
The money used for the giveaway was through the American Rescue Fund Act, and a 4000 cards was the goal of the event, according to Foley.
“It’s just a little bit of help for this time when people have a little bit of their tax money back to them,” Foley said.
The event was packed by OC residents as the lot was filled up with people waiting to get their card. “Times are tough, and $100 can go a long way. We never got any relief money,” said Larry Hirst, teacher for Newport Mesa Unified High School District. “This is nice that we can get a little something here. My wife and I are teachers and we’re very appreciative of this.”
Foley’s team saw this event as a way for the supervisor to give back before a vital midterm election.
“She’s just trying to return some tax dollars back to our pockets, which is amazing, considering gas prices right now,” said Brandy Young, Foley’s digital assistant. “She’s just trying to help people out in a time that has been pretty rough for a lot of people.”
While many OC residents at the event were satisfied with their free $100 gas card, some people, including students, were not satisfied with how the event turned out.
OC residents packed Lot K and disrupted traffic in the heavily-used lot.
“We were notified of this happening, but I just feel like they could have coordinated it with us,” CMPD officer Tony Bryant said. “Now you got people parked in here that need to leave. We got to get students to class.”
The OCC administration was grateful, however, that the CMPD came out and took care of the busy commotion.
“We have three officers out here assigned to the event to assist with traffic control, and the PD has been wonderful to come out here and help us stop and manage the traffic,” OCC Campus Safety Director Jim Rudy said.
When asked why it was important for students to vote in the coming midterm election, Foley said that those of traditional college student ages are underrepresented.
“Right now, students or people aged 18 to 30 are the least in terms of the voter turnout,” Foley said. “So we need to make sure that if students care about having nice facilities, parks, the climate, women’s rights, civil rights, human rights, then they should vote.”
“I can say in general that you have to vote for your values,” Foley said. “Vote for people who are going to take care of you.”