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C. 61
To: Board of Supervisors
From: Monica Nino, County Administrator
Date: February  9, 2021
The Seal of Contra Costa County, CA
Contra
Costa
County
Subject: Report on Board 2021 Redistricting Process - Work Plan

APPROVE OTHER
RECOMMENDATION OF CNTY ADMINISTRATOR RECOMMENDATION OF BOARD COMMITTEE

Action of Board On:   02/09/2021
APPROVED AS RECOMMENDED OTHER
Clerks Notes:

VOTE OF SUPERVISORS

AYE:
John Gioia, District I Supervisor
Candace Andersen, District II Supervisor
Diane Burgis, District III Supervisor
Karen Mitchoff, District IV Supervisor
Federal D. Glover, District V Supervisor
Contact: David Twa, County Administrators Office (925) 655-2045
cc: All County Departments (via CAO)    
I hereby certify that this is a true and correct copy of an action taken and entered on the minutes of the Board of Supervisors on the date shown.
ATTESTED:     February  9, 2021
Monica Nino, County Administrator
 
BY: , Deputy

 

RECOMMENDATION(S):

DIRECT the County Administrator’s Office and the Department of Conservation & Development (DCD) to undertake activities to facilitate redistricting of the Contra Costa County Supervisorial District boundaries and ADOPT the proposed work program, including approach, public outreach, and timeline/milestones.

FISCAL IMPACT:

County Administrator or designee, Department of Conservation & Development (DCD), County Counsel, and Clerk-Recorder will incur staff and other costs in order to facilitate the 2021 Board Redistricting process, including preparing map alternatives, arranging and conducting public hearings/workshops/ meetings, preparing public notices and other public outreach material, and maintaining a webpage dedicated to the 2021 Board Redistricting process. Total costs are estimated to be $100,000.

BACKGROUND:

At the January 26, 2021, Board of Supervisors Retreat, the County Administrator’s Office provided an update on the 2021 Redistricting process and the proposed Work Program that the County will follow to adopt the Redistricting Ordinance that complies with Federal and State Laws.


BACKGROUND: (CONT'D)
  
California law (Elections Code section 21500 et. seq.) requires the Board of Supervisors to approve supervisorial district boundaries following each federal decennial census so that district boundaries are “substantially equal in population.” (Elec. Code, § 21500(a).) The state block-level redistricting database, which will be based on official 2020 U.S. Census data, must be used to determine supervisorial district boundaries. The boundaries will remain in effect until redistricting following the next decennial census. The Board must adopt the new district boundaries no later than December 15, 2021.  
  
In the interest of complying with the statutory mandate to adopt new supervisorial district boundaries within the required timeline, the County Administrator’s Office recommends the following approach and work program for the 2021 Board Redistricting:  
  
GUIDING PRINCIPLES/CRITERIA:- Guiding principles or criteria in adjusting district boundaries should be established at the outset of the process to provide clear guidance for staff in mapping new district boundaries and to assure the public that the process will be open and transparent. Preliminarily, the following guiding principles/criteria have been identified for the Board’s consideration:
  • To the extent possible, achieve substantially equal population for each district according to census data. The difference in population between the largest and smallest district should be less than 10%.
  • Use easily identifiable geographic features and topography to draw compact and contiguous adjusted boundaries.
  • Maintain communities of interest in a single district and avoid splitting communities when adjusting boundaries. Communities of interest may be defined by existing boundaries for cities, school districts, special districts, and unincorporated communities.
Data Analysis and Mapping – Existing staff and resources, including Geographic Information System (GIS) mapping program, will be used to analyze and map district boundaries. Once the state block-level redistricting database has been received, approximately 3-4-week period will be required to complete review of the data and then begin the mapping of district boundary alternatives. This assumes a range of 3 – 6 map alternatives will be prepared. All map alternatives will be approved by the Board for public consideration. All map alternatives will be appropriately labeled to be accompanied with a summary written description so that the public and interested parties can easily track map changes as they may evolve through the process up through adoption. The first draft map cannot be released until at least three weeks after the state block-level redistricting database is made available.  
  
Public Outreach – A Redistricting webpage on the County’s website will be established as the primary portal for public information and access with up-to-date information with the ability for the public to provide feedback and comments. The website will include an interactive feature to enable the public and interested parties to draw and submit their own supervisorial district map proposals. Alternatively, we will provide a computer workstation in an accessible location at the County Administration building, 1025 Escobar Street, Martinez to enable the public and interested parties to draw and submit their own supervisorial map proposals.  
  
In addition, Subject to COVID 19 restrictions, the County Administrator’s Office and DCD will support public workshops/meetings in each supervisorial district, hosted by the district Supervisor, to provide background on the redistricting process, present potential boundary changes (map alternatives), answer questions and receive input. In the event COVID 19 restrictions prevent in person workshops, the County will host one or more virtual workshops/meetings to provide background on the redistricting process, present potential boundary changes (map alternatives), answer questions and receive input.  
The public outreach will include press releases to local newspapers, public notices on County website, CCTV, contact with City Managers, and Mayor’s Conference, early outreach to interest groups, as well as other strategies.  
  
Public Hearings and Ordinance Adoption– Redistricting is adopted by an ordinance. State law requires at least four (4) public hearings. At least one public hearing or public workshop shall be held on a Saturday, on a Sunday, or after 6 p.m. on a weekday (Monday through Friday).  
  
Interdepartmental Leadership Group - The County Administrator’s office has established an interdepartmental leadership group to provide oversight/management of the redistricting process. The leadership group is comprised of the County Administrator, or designee, Department of Conservation & Development (DCD), County Counsel, and Clerk-Recorder. The roles of the leadership group are as follows:
  • County Administrator, or designee, facilitates the redistricting process, provide oversight and direction to DCD in the development of the maps and public outreach.
  • Conservation and Development provides data analysis, prepares mapping, coordinates public outreach, maintains website and prepares outreach material.
  • County Counsel provides legal advice and assistance to County staff.
  • County Clerk-Recorder provides information and procedural guidance.
Recommendations for the 2021 Redistricting Process/Timeline:
  • Focus public outreach to use electronic or web-based communication to the greatest extent possible, including a dedicated website with area for comments, public access to maps, census data tabulation, record of comments, and regular bi-weekly updates.
  • Subject to COVID 19 restrictions, provide public meetings/workshops in each Supervisor’s District. In the event COVID 19 restrictions prevent in person workshops, the County will host one or more virtual workshops/meetings to provide background on the redistricting process, present potential boundary changes (map alternatives), answer questions and receive input.
  • Provide multiple avenues for the public to provide comments, including, but not limited to, letters, email, and website comments.
  • Direct outreach to targeted groups/communities to ensure their awareness and participation in the process.
Proposed Timeline/Milestones:  
Milestone: February 9, 2021 - Board adopts work program, including timeline, public outreach, and approach, prior to release of 2021 Census Redistricting Data.  
  
Milestone: between March and June 2021 - Census Bureau scheduled release 2021 Census Redistricting Data with Summary File to states and local government agencies. Release date is uncertain due to COVID 19. The state then releases its block-level redistricting database that will be used for redistricting. DCD staff reviews new geography, reviews data and database, and prepares draft maps. It will require a minimum of 3-4 weeks to complete this process after the database is available. The first draft map will be released no sooner than three weeks after the redistricting database is made available.  
  
Milestone: TBD – Four (4) Board Public Hearings. One before draft maps are drawn; at least two after the maps are drawn; at least one on a Saturday, Sunday or after 6:00 PM Monday through Friday. The remaining hearing can be held any time.   
  
Milestone: TBD - Redistricting Ordinance set for adoption  
Milestone: Mid-November 2021 – Date Clerk-Recorder needs adopted maps in order to update election systems  
Milestone December 15, 2021 - Statutory deadline to complete redistricting (CA Elections Code section 21501(a)(2))  

CONSEQUENCE OF NEGATIVE ACTION:

The County would not be in compliance with the requirement to approve supervisorial district boundaries as required by law.  

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