Monterey County Board of Supervisors approves redistribution plan – Monterey Herald


SALINAS – Months of public hearings, widespread suggestions and painstaking compromises ended Tuesday as Monterey County elected officials passed a new redistribution map that will guide the county’s watch districts for the next 10 years.

Following last-minute recommendations and approvals of the three final card drafts for adoption, the county supervisory board voted 4-1 for Plan N, a card fiercely supported by supervisors Luis Alejo and Chris Lopez, who both touted the proposed changes as important. to unite communities.

The newly-featured card, which offered the biggest changes between Monterey County’s five surveillance districts of plans reviewed on Tuesday, results in a change in representation for a total of 25,393 residents to an elected official other than the one they have the most. recently selected as district supervisor.

Most of the changes are expected to occur between District 1 of Alejo, which primarily covers the city of Salinas, and District 3 of Lopez, an area stretching from East Salinas to the southern border of Monterey County. The result is a population swap of 8,854 IDPs to District 3 and 9,282 IDPs to District 1. Plan N unites the Alisal neighborhood with Salinas, which was previously divided between the district boundaries, around Alisal High School, as well as an adjacent section. from East Salinas to District 1 which was, until now, represented by Supervisor John Phillips in District 2 alongside its population consisting primarily of residents of North Monterey County.

The result is essentially an increase – 5.6% to be exact – in the number of Salinas residents included in District 1, a redevelopment that Alejo welcomed with open arms.

“I am very proud to represent every resident… who was not in my district or (is) perhaps a new resident of my district,” he said. “I want to tell you that I will defend you, I will be your champion. I will be proud to represent your neighborhood, your family and your part of Salinas.

Other implications of the redesigned boundaries include changed timelines for when certain residents will vote in their next supervisory election. With different districts operating on different electoral cycles, population changes make the waiting period to vote shorter or longer than expected for some of those whose districts have changed.

This is the case for the 6,406 residents previously included in District 2 who will now be redistributed to District 1. The most recent elections for District 2 date back to 2018, which means that the supervisor’s seat would be re-eligible in 2022. For District 1, however, elections are not scheduled until 2024. This lengthens the period between elections from four to six years for new members of District 1. The same is true for the 9,282 people moving from District. 3 in District 1.

Between the two gaps, 15,688 residents will have about two more years to wait to send out their ballots. This impact gave supervisors Wendy Root Askew and Mary Adams a break to lend their support to Plan N, but Lopez’s arguments once again reiterated his belief that the card does more good than harm.

“When I think about the importance of unifying communities of interest, for me that trumps (other considerations). … Say no because we’re afraid (the residents) won’t be able to vote for those extra two years, we’re going to leave you in a place where you might not feel like you belong? I prefer to settle this now. … It’s about keeping communities together as soon as possible, bringing them together as soon as possible, ”he said.

In the end, it was only Phillips who opposed the new redistribution plan, choosing to go for an alternative more inclined to consolidate District 2’s identity as a rural district and forgo a large part of its current claim to Northwest Salinas.

Rather, Plan N turned out to be the market most supervisors could agree to, and just in time for Wednesday’s deadline to submit their approved card to California Secretary of State Shirley Weber. For more details on the final adopted map, go to https://t.co/lSo23hxkvU.

In other board business this week:

• Supervisors voted to change the cannabis distribution tax rates for the county from the current rate of $ 5 to $ 3 for mixed lighting growing, from $ 8 to $ 7 for indoor growing, and from $ 2. $ 50 to $ 1 for outdoor growing. The vote also included approval to suspend the county’s automatic commercial cannabis tax rate increases for the 2022-2023 fiscal year, with a trigger to review the rates once prices for mixed-light crops hit $ 800. per pound (prices hovered around $ 443 for November). The board will return to formally adopt the changes at its first meeting of the new year, scheduled for January 11.

• Phillips announced on Wednesday that he would not run for another term on the supervisory board, leaving his post for District 2 open after his term expires next year. Phillips has served on the Board of Directors since 2014. Following his retirement announcement, Phillips lent his support to the current Mayor of Salinas, Kimbley Craig.

• Supervisors passed a resolution declaring December 14, 2021, State Championship Day for the Hartnell Women’s Soccer Team in Monterey County. On December 5, the Hartnell College women’s football team made history by winning the California Community College Athletic Association State Championship for the first time since its program began.


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