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Next Alameda County Redistricting Meeting is 6/28/2011

Original post made by Billie, Mohr Park, on Jun 20, 2011

The date and logistics for the next supervisorial redistricting meeting on June 28, 2011 have been posted. No Agenda. No presentation material. Web Link

According to the posted “Timeline” on the BofS redistricting website, this meeting is supposed to be a "Public Hearing by Board of Supervisors on proposed plan." My question is: How can the Board hold a public hearing on a “proposed plan” when they themselves have yet to be officially “advised”?

The purpose of the June 15th meeting was supposed to be: “The Board Ad Hoc Committee advises the full Board and public regarding the submitted redistricting proposals.” Unless the three remaining Board members not on the “Ad Hoc Committee”, and, from what I could tell from the broadcast, not in the chamber during the meeting, were attending the meeting as silent, invisible audience members, the publicly stated purpose of this meeting was not accomplished.

So, unless Supvs Haggerty and Carson, aka “Ad Hoc Committee”, are holding informal, undisclosed meetings in violation of the Brown Act with the three Board members not on their little, in-house committee, the “Board” has not been officially “advised” of the various proposals, and *cannot*, therefore, provide the public with a “proposed plan”.

In addition, although Map A1 is now available, the AC Staff have NOT provided the “City/Census Places by District and by County” information that lays out specific population breakdowns by town within each District. Web Link

After watching the June 15, 2011, Special Meeting, it’s obvious that gerrymandering is alive, well and protected by the Supervisors as they not only ignore city limit and community of interest boundaries in the redistricting process to instead establish arbitrary district boundaries that give themselves political advantage, but they also make it obvious that they are not seriously considering any of the proposed plans submitted by the independent citizens group. Do the Supervisors really think we, their constituents, haven’t figured out that it’s much more difficult to unseat a Supervisor when towns/voting blocks are split up between two or more Districts?

In my last letter to the Board, I asked for the following. I’m not holding my breath.

“In preparation for the next meeting scheduled on June 28, 2011, I ask that you *specifically* and *seriously* be prepared to *publicly* discuss and consider the pros and cons of each one of the redistricting map proposals. Prior to this meeting, you need to ensure that all of the required material is available to the public online; this includes not just the Agenda, but also the presentation material with redistricting criteria used, the maps, populations/ethnic breakdowns and the “City/Census Places by District and by County” information. This information must be available enough in advance of the meeting that those who are not able to attend can provide the Board with their comments for consideration prior to the meeting; any comments received should be placed online for public viewing. In order for each proposal to be completely and intelligently discussed, not only *must* the full Board be in attendance, but also representative(s) from the Alameda County Citizens Redistricting Task Force. Then, and only then, can a decision be made about which proposal is really the best one, not for you, but for us, the residents of Alameda County.“

I know it's an uphill battle, but please send your comments to the Board of Supervisors. Let them know what you think of their redistricting plans and process. Thanks for your time! Web Link

Comments (3)

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Posted by Billie
a resident of Mohr Park
on Jun 23, 2011 at 2:53 pm

Billie is a registered user.

It's now less than three full working days until the AC Board of Supervisors is supposed to, according to *their* timeline, hold a "Public Hearing by Board of Supervisors on proposed plan".

Although the BofS has yet to post an Agenda, they did post the remaining map proposals with population data, as well as the “legal” descriptions of each map. The legal descriptions are a numeric listing of the tracts in each proposed district. Web Link

At this point, my comments only address Maps A1 and G as I believe Map A1 will be the map the BofS will choose to finalize, and Map G has the best design (IMO) of those proposed by the independent citizens group.

It looks like the BofS Map A1 has incorporated the small numbers of individuals and families from various towns that had been split out in Map A back into their larger community population. That change raises the percentage of towns that are not split between districts from 55% to 70%, or 14 towns. Pleasanton is split between Districts 1 and 4; Sunol’s 913 residents are split between Districts 1 and 2.

Map G, from the Alameda County Citizens Redistricting Task Force, has 85%, or 17 of Alameda County’s towns completely in a single district -- including Pleasanton, Livermore, Dublin and Sunol, which are all in District 1.

As for the population range stats between Maps A1 and G, Map G spreads the county’s population evenly over the districts and comes very close to meeting the BofS “Ideal District Population” of 302,054 in every district. Map G reflects a “Relative Overall Range” between districts of .85%; Map A1 has a much larger spread of 2.80%. The ethnic mapping between the two maps looks to be very comparable.

I like Map G the best because I believe it most closely meets the criteria for redistricting the BofS themselves laid out to supposedly follow in this process. With Map G, the Alameda County Citizens Redistricting Task Force designed each district in a way that allows every Supervisor to retain most of the constituents they have today, without resorting to gerrymandering. It’s too bad the Board can’t say the same.

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Posted by Billie
a resident of Mohr Park
on Jun 23, 2011 at 5:48 pm

Billie is a registered user.

Interesting article in today's "The Independent" regarding county redistricting.

Although Mayor Hosterman "said that she has not seen Map E" (the BofS map that puts Pleasanton 100% in Supv Miley's District 4 with Oakland and Castro Valley), "after hearing a description of it from a reporter, she said, "People of Pleasanton welcome representation of the entire city by Miley. Congratulations to Supervisor Miley, if it comes to pass."

It would seem, given their words, that neither Mayor Hosterman, nor Councilman Thorne have bothered to take a look at any of the maps submitted by the Alameda County Citizens Redistricting Task Force. Councilman Thorne said regarding Map E, "it's preferable to keep Pleasanton in a Valley district," . . . "However, the top priority for Pleasanton is to stay together in one district" and "it supercedes being kept with the Valley cities".

"The Independent" also reports that splitting Hayward as Maps C, D and G do, could "draw a lawsuit from Latino organizations" which is why Supv Haggerty's maps are preferable to the Board. Perhaps the Alameda County Citizens Redistricting Task Force would get more traction on their proposals if they too threaten a lawsuit . . .

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Posted by Billie
a resident of Mohr Park
on Jun 24, 2011 at 12:08 pm

Billie is a registered user.

The BofS has finally published the Agenda and presentation material for this meeting. Web Link

Please note that the portion of the BofS meeting for redistricting is a short note on page 13 of that agenda.

As far as the presentation material goes -- it’s mostly what was presented at the local meetings. I found it very interesting, however, that on page 9 the “Ad Hoc Committee” is claiming that on “June 15 - The Board’s Ad-Hoc Redistricting Committee advised the full Board and the public regarding submitted proposals”. Huh!! I guess the three supervisors not on the “Ad Hoc Committee” really were invisible audience members at that meeting!!

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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