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    24.    
City Council Regular
Meeting Date: 05/23/2017  
Submitted By: Sylvia Salas-Ruff, Executive Assistant

SUBJECT:
CALIFORNIA VOTING RIGHTS ACT – DISTRICT ELECTIONS 
 
RECOMMENDATION:
Conduct the Public Hearing, receive public input, and provide direction regarding the proposed district boundary maps consistent with the California Voting Rights Act (CVRA).
BACKGROUND/ANALYSIS:
The City of Chino Hills currently uses an at-large election system in which all voters in the City have the opportunity to vote for candidates for all five seats on the City Council. In August 2016, the City received a letter from the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF) which stated that MALDEF had received complaints from Latino voters in the City that the use of an "at-large" election system for City Council resulted in Latino vote dilution, and that Latino voters were prevented from electing candidates of their choice.  MALDEF asserted that the City is in violation of the California Voting Rights Act of 2001 and demanded that the City convert to a district-based election system. 
 
After reviewing the issue and the likelihood for success in a potential litigation, the City Council declared their intent to transition to district-based elections on November 22, 2016. Since that time, the City held a community meeting in January to provide background information and receive input. Following that, the City Council has held Public Hearings in February and March prior to drafting four alternative maps. Those maps, along with three alternatives submitted by the public, were posted on the City’s website on March 31, 2017. On April 11, the City Council held a Public Hearing to receive comments on the various map alternatives. Since that Public Hearing, two maps have been submitted by interested residents. They are labeled the "Austin Map" and the "Kreeger Map." These, together with the four maps drafted by the City's consultant, NDC, as well as the three maps submitted prior to April 1, are provided for the City Council's consideration.
 
The draft District Maps developed by NDC followed traditional redistricting principles to draw district boundaries that:

•Include Communities of Interest
•Are Compact and Contiguous
•Have Visible (Natural and Man-made) Boundaries
•Use Whole Census Blocks
•Respect Voters’ Wishes / and Avoid Pairing Current City Council Members in One District
•Balance the Population between the Districts (Approximately 15,000 Residents)
 
 

The City will continue to receive public input on the draft district maps through this Public Hearing. The City Council may then select a preferred map and direct staff to return at the June 13 meeting to introduce an Ordinance.
ENVIRONMENTAL (CEQA) REVIEW:
This action is not a project within the meaning of the CEQA Guidelines Section 15278 and is therefore exempt from CEQA as it is an administrative change that will not result in any direct or indirect physical change in the environment. It is therefore exempt from CEQA.
FISCAL IMPACT:
To date the City’s fiscal impact is $31,000 for the services of National Demographics Corporation.  There may be additional expenditures to complete this process.
REVIEWED BY OTHERS:
This item has been reviewed by the City Attorney.
Attachments
NDC Draft 1
NDC Draft 1 Stats
NDC Draft 2
NDC Draft 2 Stats
NDC Draft 3
NDC Draft 3 Stats
NDC Draft 4
NDC Draft 4 Stats
Austin NDC Map
Austin NDC Map Stats
Esparza NDC Map
Esparza NDC Map Stats
Gallagher Map
Gallagher Map 2
Kreeger NDC Map
Gallagher Map 2 Stats
Kreeger NDC Map Stats

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