Tag Archives: Berkeley redistricting
Tuesday night, the Berkeley City Council approved a new redistricting map to redraw council boundaries to reflect the city’s population changes over the past decade and increase the number of student-aged voters in District 7.
Proponents of the new map say District 7 will become the first student district in the country. Cal students have helped spearhead the campaign to build support for the map, which they said has broad support on campus and in the neighborhoods nearby.
But detractors of the new map say it is a watered down district that will dilute progressive student power, and pushed for a different proposal. The vote split the council, with council members Kriss Worthington and Jesse Arreguín voting against it, and Councilman Max Anderson abstaining.
Following pleas to give students more time to get involved with Berkeley’s redistricting process, the Berkeley City Council voted Tuesday night to delay its decision on proposed changes to the city’s council districts that are required to balance the population among them.
The council voted in July to select a preferred redistricting map, the Berkeley Student District Campaign (BSDC) map, which creates a “campus district” made up largely of student-aged residents who live near UC Berkeley but is otherwise not a radical departure from many of the city’s existing council districts.
In June, Councilman Kriss Worthington‘s office created an alternative map — the United Student District Amendment (USDA) map — which includes 11 co-ops, three dorms and International House that aren’t part of the BSDC map. The USDA map would boost the population of student-aged residents from 86 (BSDC) to 90%. (Worthington said Thursday that currently his district is composed of about 70% student-aged residents.) … Continue reading »
A small group of community members came together earlier this week at the Berkeley Chamber of Commerce to learn how the city’s redistricting process, underway for the past two years, will impact the city going forward.
Redistricting takes place in Berkeley every 10 years, when U.S. Census data are released, to ensure that districts have roughly equal populations.
Since at least 2000, students and others who live around the UC Berkeley campus have been trying to establish a student-majority district with the aim of giving students a larger voice and role in city decisions. In 2000, a proposal that essentially created a ring around campus was rejected by the city attorney because it didn’t comply with the city charter’s rules for redistricting. Last fall, Berkeley voters passed Measure R to change the way redistricting takes place. … Continue reading »
A new City Council redistricting plan was presented Tuesday during the second public hearing for redistricting proposals, but council members voted against considering it because of its last-minute introduction.
Despite the submittal of the new proposal, the council voted to make the Berkeley Student District Campaign (BSDC) map the preferred plan for council redistricting. The preferred map creates a student-majority district around the UC Berkeley campus and is scheduled to be adopted Sept. 10. The redistricting will correct for population changes recorded in the 2010 census, and will be the first since the passage of Measure R last November, which removes the severe geographic constraints mandated in Berkeley since 1986. … Continue reading »
Not so very long ago, Berkeley proclaimed itself to be a “City of Neighborhoods.” Not so much now. Under the quiet and persistent guidance of the present Mayor and Council, policy and practice emphasis has steadily shifted away from neighborhoods — their well-being and preservation — to developing density and allowing increased project size and bulk.
This point was driven home on May 7, 2013 when the Council approved a motion by Council Member Gordon Wozniak (seconded by Darryl Moore) … Continue reading »
Tuesday night, the Berkeley City Council held a public hearing to learn more about seven recently submitted maps that aim to adjust council district boundaries to correct for population and demographic changes across the city. The council voted to grant further consideration to two plans — the ASUC-endorsed student district map and a similar map designed by Eric Panzer — both of which would create a student-majority district with the aim of creating a new seat on the council for a student.
The council will hold a second public hearing July 2, and plans to vote on its final preference then. Community members can submit changes to the two maps up for consideration through May 17. (Scroll down to experience a “Storified” version of the council meeting.) … Continue reading »
A student-majority district in Berkeley moved a step closer with the release of redistricting plans on Thursday. Six individuals and community groups submitted redistricting plans, with most of them concentrating on creating a student-majority district 7, which currently is represented by Kriss Worthington.
Berkeley’s redistricting is spurred by the 2010 census, which showed a population increase of nearly 10,000 to 112,580. Population changes and demographic shifts had made the existing council districts highly unequal in population, from D5 (Laurie Capitelli’s district) with 12,709 to D7 with 16,623. The other vital wrinkle in the current redistricting was the passage of Measure R last November, which removes the severe geographic constraints mandated in Berkeley since 1986. … Continue reading »
Berkeley is seeking redistricting plans for the city’s eight council districts. Since 1986, Berkeley redistricting has been constrained to boundaries resembling the 1986 lines. After the passage of Measure R in November, those geographic constraints have been removed.
Redistricting plans must be submitted by March 15. A community meeting and two public hearings will be held in the spring and summer of this year, leading to the City Council considering a redistricting ordinance at its September 10th meeting. If the announced redistricting process calendar is adhered to, the redistricting ordinance will become effective on October 20, 2013, and the new districts will be used in the 2014 election, when seats for districts 1, 4, 7 and 8 will be up for election. … Continue reading »
Redistricting in Berkeley will be deferred to 2013 after a 7-2 vote by the City Council last night. In the same vote, the Council agreed to draft an amendment to the City Charter which would allow for redistricting that could deviate from the 1986 boundaries.
“It seems to me to be completely outdated and counterproductive having to stick to 1986 lines,” said Mayor Tom Bates. “Redistricting should be about fairness, not about perpetuating the political career of any person.”
The 1986 measure that created Berkeley’s districts — and the amended city charter that resulted — has three requirements: no boundary changes can unseat an existing councilmember, the boundaries need to adhere as closely as possible to the 1986 boundaries, and the districts should be equal in population. The Council will place an amendment on this November’s ballot to eliminate what many members saw as unfair requirements.
Much of the impetus for the deferment of redistricting and a potential charter amendment has come from a group of UC Berkeley students, who have been agitating for at least one student majority district in the city. The 1986 requirements made that a difficult task. The student redistricting proposal, presented by ASUC vice president Joey Freeman, was non-compliant. … Continue reading »
Nine students met on the steps of Old City Hall Tuesday to submit their redistricting proposal to Berkeley City Council. Their pitch came early in the game – with the deadline for initial submissions agreed at last night’s council meeting as September 30.
The students are summer interns at City Council and will return to different schools in the fall. Audrey Gutierrez and César Perez attend Berkeley Community College. Ché Sanders and Jacquell Simpson hail from Berkeley High School. John Nguyen and Gianna Albaum attend UC Berkeley. Beatriz Andrade comes form Sequoia High School in Redwood City, and Saori Matsuoka and Stephanie Phonvongsa attend UC San Diego.
City managers announced a call for redistricting on July 11, and the group arrived with their plan eight days later. They are the first to submit a proposal this year. … Continue reading »
In the 15 years since Berkeley adopted City Council districts, no student has been elected to the post even though they make up a quarter of the population.
Now a coalition of UC Berkeley student leaders is aiming to change that.
The group hopes to put forward a plan that will reconfigure two City Council districts to make one with a super-majority of students. If that doesn’t work, the leaders may try and put a referendum before Berkeley voters to create a student-dominated district.
“Is this fair to the community?” said Joey Freeman, who as vice-president of external affairs for the Associated Students of the University of California is leading the redistricting effort. “You can make a very good argument there should be someone on the council representing the student interests.” … Continue reading »