County supes happy with new state district boundaries

·5 min read

Jan. 14—STOCKTON — The San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors were pleased with the new state assembly and senate district boundaries, stating they were what their constituents wanted.

"I think it was really the result the board was after," Supervisor Miller said. "It was a careful process that included really reaching out to the public."

The California Citizens Redistricting Commission delivered its final draft maps of all new state senate and assembly district boundaries to the Secretary of State just before the end of 2021, as well as new U.S. Congressional District boundaries.

Redistricting occurs every 10 years, coinciding with the release of U.S. Census Bureau data, and is designed to equalize populations among electoral districts.

"Anyone who's not 100% satisfied with these maps... I think these are the very best maps we could have gotten that were the reflection of what the public told us they wanted to see," Miller said. "Boundaries could have shifted, but we did hear from the public and we did honestly try to respond to that."

County staff said the final maps submitted last month were very similar to the draft maps the county's redistricting advisory committee submitted to the CCRC last fall.

For the 9th and 13th Assembly districts, the county committee drew boundaries that gave the latter the entire southwestern portion of San Joaquin County, while the former was given the remainder, as well as Galt and eastern Stanisalus County.

Now, the 9th District will encompass the southern portion of Sacramento County that includes Galt, Isleton, Walnut Grove, Wilton and Rancho Murrieta; the northern portion of San Joaquin County between the county line and Stockton; the eastern portion of the county between Stockton and the county line; and the communities of Lathrop, Escalon, Manteca and Ripon.

The new district boundaries also encompass a western sliver of Amador County that includes Ione and Buena Vista; a western sliver of Calaveras County that includes Rancho Calaveras; and the northeastern portion of Stanislaus County that includes the communities of Orange Blossom, La Grange, Waterford, Hickman and Del Rio.

Elk Grove, where Assemblyman Jim Cooper's office is located, would be moved into the very small Assembly District 10.

State Senate District 5 was proposed to encompass all of San Joaquin County, Galt, and a portion of Stanislaus County directly south of San Joaquin County's southeastern corner.

The district will now extend into the southeastern portion of Alameda County that includes Livermore, Pleasanton and Dublin, and Galt will be moved into a another district. The small portion of Stanislaus County proposed for the district is not included.

Congressional District 9 was proposed to encompass all of the county, except for Mountain House. However, almost all of San Joaquin County would be in District 9, as well as a portion of Contra Costa County that includes Discovery Bay, and the southwest corner of Calaveras County.

Lathrop and the unincorporated area of the county south of Tracy will become a part of District 13.

Board chair Chuck Winn, who served as the county committee's chair and represents Ripon, Lodi and Escalon, said the redistricting process was a "phenomenal effort."

"I think we surpassed my expectations when we first entered into consideration with regards to coming together for those particular state races and the congressional race," he said. "I don't think we could have done a better job considering all the aspects, whether it be the online survey, the telephone, etc., and certainly in collaboration with business council and other groups that participated in the community advisory."

Supervisor Tom Patti said San Joaquin County was responsible for getting several other counties engaged in the redistricting process. And while some city governments may have not provided feedback or input, the end result was what the majority of residents wanted, he said.

"I was talking to farmers the other day, and they were satisfied that we were engaged and they had a regional representation for agriculture and water, some of their most paramount issues," Patti said. "Kudos to everyone for their efforts and collaborative support they were given, and really, (for) actualizing and engaging the public to speak out and for us to make certain their voice was heard."

Days after the new district boundaries were submitted to the state, Assemblyman Health Flora, R-Ripon, announced his intention to run for Assembly District 9 this year.

His current District 12 was absorbed by the 9th and 8th districts after redistricting, and moved to Marin County.

This week, former Lodi resident Ricky Gill announced he was suspending his campaign for Congressional District 5, which extends from El Dorado County to northern Tulare County, and includes eastern Stanislaus County.

"The tumultuous, unpredictable redistricting cycle, combined with the deference due to incumbents of my own party, required our campaign to remain patient and mostly passive these past two months," Gill said in a media statement Thursday.

"I know Congressman (Tom) McClintock (R-Roseville) will be a stalwart proponent for fiscal responsibility, and I endorse his re-election in Congressional District 5," Gill added.

A Tokay High School alum, Gill announced his bid for the 10th Congressional District seat in November, currently held by Josh Harder, D-Modesto.

Redistricting moved the eastern portion of Harder's district into the new District 5.

Gill ran for the 9th Congressional District in 2012, and was endorsed by Jeb Bush and former Rep. Norman Shumway, but lost to Jerry McNerney, who still holds the seat.

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