Shortcomings of the Redistricting Commission’s “July 19th Plan”

by on July 20, 2011 · 4 comments

in Election, San Diego

By Jason Everitt / Two Cathedrals / July 19, 2011

Without much time to produce a side-by-side comparison of the major redistricting proposals and the newly minted “July 19th Plan,” here is my first take on the obvious shortcomings of this map.

It’s clear that the so-called “Coast and Canyon” district, the historic African-American empowerment district, and Border-Barrio Latino empowerment district are locked. Expectedly, there has been little variation in the borders of these districts in any major proposal, including the “July 19th Plan.”

The shortcomings of the “July 19th Plan” include (but not limited to):

  1. Ignoring UTC and UCSD as population centers of the API community, while simultaneously failing to include the next most desirable API population center north of Mira Mesa and Rancho Penasquitos. Instead, the July 19th map opts to pull Clairemont into their District 6 (the API empowerment district). Clairemont is not an API population center, not geographically contiguous in a meaningful way, and divides a community planning area. Rancho Penasquitos is left as an island, rather than uniting it with similar communities in Torrey Highlands, Black Mountain Ranch, and Carmel Mountain that have more significant API density.
  2. Splitting apart Little Italy and the airport from Downtown and the civic core. A district that unites the Airport, Little Italy, and Downtown with the area bounded by the 5, 8, 805, and 94 has the value of empowering three distinct communities: our tourism hubs and the businesses that rely on them, our civic core, and the LGBT community. It’s rare to create a district that adds such tremendous value to public, private, cultural, and demographically consistent communities. The Redistricting Commission has to take a second look here.
  3. Dividing the SDSU/College area community of both sides of the 8. Instead of keeping the college community whole and connecting it neighboring communities along the 8, the “July 19th Plan” connects the college community north of 8 with bedroom communities in Tierrasanta and the almost vacant Miramar East. SDSU proper is pulled into an otherwise well-drawn Latino empowerment district to the south. It looks as though this map reflects a commitment to a second Latino empowerment district, tracking somewhat consistently with the Mid-City Latino and Immigrant empowerment district, but it’s unclear what role SDSU plays in that equation. Will the voters in more affluent neighborhoods around SDSU effectively drown out the power of Latino community?

The Redistricting Commission needs to set out some priorities and start making decision based on those priorities. They have an opportunity both tonight and Thursday to make changes that could produce even stronger API, LGBT, and Latino districts, without fracturing economic and educational communities downtown and around SDSU.

The draft currently being discussed will become the official draft map on Friday. If you’d like to share your support for these important changes, the time is now. Please attend the remaining Redistricting Commission hearings this week and make your voice heard.

The hearings are being held:

THURSDAY, JULY 21, 2011, AT 4:00 P.M.

For post-map hearing information, please visit the Redistricting Commission website.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar OB law(yer) July 21, 2011 at 12:07 pm

Admittedly, I haven’t reviewed the entirety of the census tracks included to determine how this will effect us here in OB, but my gut reaction is that this is a HUGE victory to have the downtown and chamber of commerce juggernaut removed from the back of the CD2 representative.

Now… the real question will be “who will step in to fill the void of this obvious powerbase in that constituency?”

Will the CD2 rep be finally forced to deal with BEACH community issues and not just keep focused on the downtown football stadium, Mayor’s cronies and Convention Center hubbbubs? That could be nice :)


avatar Cindy Chan July 22, 2011 at 11:50 pm

Time and time again, the Redistricting Commission has been presented overwhelming requests and data for the need to recognize the Asian Pacific Islander population as a community of interest, and to empower our community as they have done so for other communities of interest. We have given more than our fair share of testimony, yet for some reason, most of the commissioners have given little to no public consideration of our requests. It is an absolute SHAME on this great city of San Diego for the Commission to have proposed a supposed Asian-empowered district that has increased very little from the district created 10 years ago.

In the words of Commissioner Quiroz, one of only two commissioners who have spoken publicly about our unfair treatment, had this to say on July 21: “I cannot vote for a map which does not have a district which allows the sizable Asian American community to feel that they are a part of this city, that their vote counts and that their vibrant and multifaceted culture is a strong part of San Diego’s future. The Asian American community do not deserve to be marginalized for a second time, for a second decade. So, I will not be voting today to approve the map before us.” You can find her full statement given in the July 21 video posted on the City’s Redistricting website.


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