Redistricting Commission wants to hear from Californians as it redraws political boundaries

California

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) — California’s redistricting commission is working to redraw state maps for congressional, legislative and local officeholders. 

The group wants to hear from Californians to make sure residents are represented fairly in the process that happens once a decade. 

It’s a process that plays out following the census, and in the latest count, California lost a congressional seat.

In California, finalizing district maps is up to an independent 14-member citizen commission. 

“We are doing the best we can; we are listening. We do have a united front to draw the best lines that draw the fairest representation for Californians,” said Alicia Fernandez, with the Citizens Redistricting Commission. 

Over the next few days, the commission is welcoming public comment on how it should set new congressional, legislative and local boundaries. 

“We want to hear from you. Please be involved, please see our maps because this is going to affect us for the next 10 years,” Fernandez said. 

The commission will update maps to account for California’s lost seat, but commissioners could not say which region might be affected. 

“It’s very early to say where that’s going to be lost because, the way we draw districts, they have to be equally populated or as close to that as possible,” Fernandez said. “It’s difficult to say if it will be a specific area or it’s going to be a combination of some areas, we really don’t know.”

The commission is set to release a draft map of newly drawn districts by Nov. 15. The map has to be finalized by Dec. 27. 

“We want to be as equitable as possible, and we have the criteria,” Fernandez said. “And the good thing about the independent commission is that it is an independent commission. It is 14 Californians that aren’t legislators, aren’t in some sort of elected position, and we understand the importance of individuals wanting to have representatives that represent them.”

The commission has a meeting Wednesday starting at 11 a.m. where the public will start to see some of the submitted ideas for maps. Public comment will be allowed through Friday. 

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