MINUTES
FOR THE REDISTRICTING COMMISSION
OF THE CITY OF SAN DIEGO
FOR FRIDAY, MAY 4, 2001
6:00 P.M. - 8:00 P.M.
TIERRASANTA RECREATION CENTER
11220 CLAIREMONT MESA BOULEVARD
SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA

CHRONOLOGY OF THE MEETING:

Chairman Pesqueira called the meeting to order at 6:08 p.m. Each Commissioner gave a short personal introduction. Chairman Pesqueira announced that the public hearing must be adjourned by 8:00 p.m. Chairman Pesqueira adjourned the meeting at 7:55 p.m.

ITEM-1: CALL TO ORDER
Chairman Pesqueira called the meeting to order at 6:08 p.m.
ITEM-2: ROLL CALL

Operations Director Staajabu Heshimu called the roll:

(C) Chairman Ralph R. Pesqueira-present
(VC) Vice Chairman Leland T. Saito-present
(M) Mateo R. Camarillo-not present
(M) Charles W. Johnson-present
(M) Marichu G. Magaña-present
(M) Shirley ODell-present
(M) Juan Antonio Ulloa-present

REDISTRICTING COMMISSION ACTION (Tape location A040-054.)

ATTENDANCE DURING THE MEETING:

(C) Chairman Ralph R. Pesqueira-present

(VC) Vice Chairman Leland T. Saito-present

(M) Mateo R. Camarillo-present

(M) Charles W. Johnson-present

(M) Marichu G. Magaña -present

(M) Shirley ODell-present

(M) Juan Antonio Ulloa-present

ALSO PRESENT:

Deputy City Attorney Lisa Foster
Staajabu Heshimu, Operations Director
Joey Perry, Senior Planner

ITEM-3: PUBLIC HEARING

Welcome and Introductions by Chairman Ralph Pesqueira:

Chairman Pesqueira welcomed and introduced Council Member Jim Madaffer. Chairman Pesqueira gave an overview regarding the procedure for the public hearing.

REDISTRICTING COMMISSION ACTION: (Tape location A003-038; A065-098)

Deputy City Attorney Lisa Foster:

Ms. Foster explained why there is a Redistricting Commission.

REDISTRICTING COMMISSION ACTION (Tape location A225-260)

The Redistricting Task by Director Staajabu Heshimu:

Ms. Heshimu presented a power point presentation on "Redistricting the City of San Diego" in order to provide background on the redistricting process.

REDISTRICTING COMMISSION ACTION (Tape location A054-125)

Area Maps and Data by Senior Planner Joey Perry:

Ms. Perry presented information regarding the Preliminary Census 2000 Population Estimates by Council District and gave information on maps and data.

REDISTRICTING COMMISSION ACTION (Tape location A136-222.)

PUBLIC COMMENTS

SPEAKER: Clint Carney

I'm a Council Representative for Council District 5. I just wanted to come tonight and introduce myself. I specifically work in the communities of Linda Vista and Scripps Ranch, and I'll be here for this session if anyone wants to chat with me now or on the way out.

REDISTRICTING COMMISSION ACTION (Tape location A260-290.)

SPEAKER 1: Council Member Jim Madaffer

I'm Jim Madaffer the Council Member representing the Seventh Council District and very proudly so. Redistricting is certainly a serious matter that I look at. What is important with the redistricting process is that we ensure that every citizen has a vote and is represented well, and there is no question when you look at the map there are things that can be changed from what took place last time; but at the same time, there are a lot of things I want to talk to you about tonight that the commission did last time, that the redistricting process did last time, that was very good. I certainly commend this year's Commissioners. I know I've met some of you and some I have not. Thank you for taking on this responsibility. I'll speak to you tonight not just as a council member, but as a resident of Tierrasanta for about 17 years and the former chair of the Tierrasanta Planning Group, so having worked in this area quite a long time. I know you have a map here that you brought that staff stuck on the wall, and a map that I brought that I'm happy to donate, one I had done that has the census tracts on it. I wanted to start by asking the Attorney, I heard you say, Mr. Chairman, earlier, that the Charter and this new change requires that census tracts be whole, is that correct?

Attorney Lisa Foster: I believe what the Charter language says is to the extent possible that they should be made of whole census tracts. There's not a prohibition on splitting census tracts, but one of the factors to be considered is to try not to split census tracts.

Council Member Madaffer: The Seventh District as noted earlier has got some unique diversity to it. The northern part of our district borders Poway, Santee, El Cajon, La Mesa, and Lemon Grove, and it's unique in that it's the only district that deals with the various jurisdictions as much as I do; and it's one that, being in the eastern part of the city, it's kind of nicely nestled just right where it is. As far as I'm concerned, I'd like it to stay just about exactly as it is. The natural boundaries of I-15 on the west, what made sense ten years ago I still think makes sense today. I really think that our relationship that we've had with our neighbors to the south has been very good. If you were to move any which way it would be to the north and south. You could probably go a little bit each way. I was amazed when I saw this report a couple of months ago. We need to gain 7800, that was quite a lot; but here, it's a couple of census tracts, is what it looks like. I know that one of your responsibilities is to take into consideration communities of identifiable interest and there is no question the Seventh District does that already very well. Tierrasanta being, as you know, one of the master planned communities, where we are tonight, is a wonderful community and obviously should stay whole as it is. We go south of the San Diego River into the Navajo Community Planning Area, those communities also function under one community planning group and they too should stay as a whole. When we go south of Interstate 8, we have the College Area, which is also its own planning group and we also have portions of the Eastern Area Planning Group which take into consideration the Mid-City Area and that's those communities of El Cerrito, Rolando, Darnell, and the eastern part of City Heights. The reason I brought the map is because there are some things, and Council Member Atkins and I have worked close together with our pretty much common boundary of Euclid Avenue, talking south of I-8, there will be some areas such as Talmadge, for example. If you look at Census tract 96.03, we take in a very small portion of Talmadge, which is unfortunate for Talmadge; it may be something you want to look at. Either give us all of Talmadge or give it back to District 3. As you go further south as well, these are the areas where I see you can make some changes. Again, the service from my standpoint will be the same to the constituents. We serve District 3 residents just as much as we serve District 7 residents just as much as we do all of San Diego and very proud to do so, but we do have some unique issues that go on. Again, as I started out saying, the district ranges from Poway on the north to the College Grove Shopping Center at Highway 94 on the south and it's quite a wide range of socio/economic diversities. You have estate homes of Alvarado Estates that are selling for 3 to 5 million dollars each. You have homes in Fox Canyon in City Heights that are going into a redevelopment process in the not too distant future just so that we can improve the quality of life by adding parks and neighborhood amenities for the folks that live in that area. By looking at the planning groups that are recognized by the City Council, per Council Policy 600-24, I certainly would encourage you to keep those folks, out of consideration as communities of interest, and there is no question that they are. Again those are, as I mentioned earlier, currently wholly within our district right now, the communities of Tierrasanta, the Navajo Community, as well as the College area. The other thing I wanted to mention is Mission Trails Regional Park. It is obviously quite a treasure and dead center to the district, as Joey is pointing out, pretty much bounded to the south of Highway 52. You'll note to the north of I-52 an area that's actually a community planning area known as East Elliot. It's about 2,000 acres of undeveloped land. The Sycamore Canyon landfill is right in the middle of it which, once Miramar closes, will be the only main landfill we'll have in the region. Mission Trails Park is very unique to the Seventh District. As I move forward in my plans expanding Mission Trails north, as well as property just underneath Poway adjacent to Scripps Ranch - that would probably be easier to see in that map up there right underneath where it says City of Poway - there is an area there and to the east - the little green dot where Joey's hand is - there's 248 acres that the City already owns that will soon become part of a 1700 acre addition to what I call Mission Trails Regional Park North. It's a development project that's currently under review known as Rancho Encantada; and if that ends up getting approved, it will add an additional 1700 acres to what we are calling Mission Trails Park. The connection here is one mile east of the Miramar area, I mean there's no seat yet. If I had my dream come true every bit of acres east of I-15, south of Scripps, north of 52 would all become part of Mission Trails Park and that's something I'll continue to work on as Council Member. At least from a planning stand point, it's probably a 20 to 50 year thing, but you have to start some place. I wanted to share these kinds of facts with you, and just to let you know that I'm proud to be a native of the City of San Diego having lived here all my life. I ask that you do, as a Commission, your very best to keep the Seventh Council District pretty much just like it is now. I think the relationships that I have and my office has with the communities have been wonderful. We have very good working relationships, as I said, with the Third District. Not only do you have to gain 7,700, again that's why I asked the attorney about those census tracts. I see a portion of 96.03, as I mentioned that's part of Grantville, it actually - if you go just south of the mission, that's District 6. Right now, that's something that we could possibly gain and pick up Joey's planning tip there. That's currently in the Sixth City Council District, it's everything east of I-15 that would be an instant area to pickup a number of them. We would be very happy to represent those folks as well. I think as you look, depending on what you end up doing with District 3 and 4, maybe their numbers don't have to change much. It's something that we would be certainly interested in looking at, those folks as well. I don't want to split a community so I'm not going to talk about an option going north, which is that portion of Scripps Ranch south of Pomerado. I don't know what that is in terms of numbers, but that too is technically a portion of Census Tract 95.04, which is all of that whole eastern area of the Seventh Council District as it now stands. I want to leave you with those thoughts and thank you very much for the opportunity to be here tonight.

REDISTRICTING COMMISSION ACTION (Tape location A294-442.)

SPEAKER 2: Adrian Kwiatkowski

Nice to see you folks again. Last time I spoke in front of you was in Normal Heights. At that time I had given you my personal view of what I think should happen in my community of Rancho Penasquitos. Last night the Rancho Penasquitos Town Council took an official position, and you will be receiving a letter. We outlined two basic points that address our community and one for the City. At one point we talked about - and I know this is not within your purview, but it's something that this is a format to raise and let people know that this issue is out there as well. The two points affecting our community, first off we're adamantly opposed to our community being split in half like what has happened to Pacific Beach or Linda Vista or City Heights or Hillcrest. That is not an option for our community. We know that District 1 needs to lose people, but we do not want to lose half of our community. You talk about communities of interest, we have our planning group and we'd like to stay within that same planning group. We do not want to have to deal with two council people, and we would be adamantly opposed to that happening to Rancho Penasquitos. The second issue is, once again, our natural family is along the I-15 corridor. Now, unfortunately, shear numbers tell you there are more than 150,000 people living in the I-15 corridor so one of those communities is going to have to be in another council district. That leads to the fourth point, which is not part of your purview, but I'm going to mention it anyhow because it will be on the record then. We would like to be put in with our natural family on the I-15 corridor. I'm not sure that's possible, but we wanted you to know. Those are the two official points that we have. A third point that we have is going back to the issue that communities should not be divided and this happened in other parts of the City. We don't think that it is necessarily a beneficial thing for those communities. The two issues we talked about that are not part of our statement is the issue of having respect for the electoral process that just occurred. I know you said you don't have to have concern for incumbents, and you can redistrict them out. We don't think that is appropriate. That's a slap in the face to the electoral process that just occurred if you redistrict someone out and totally separate them from the electorate that just put them in office. I know that has been tossed out there for a potential change for some people so that is something we think would be inappropriate. This Commission has highlighted the fact that this City needs more council districts. I know that's not your job and you talked about that's not in the Charter, but by saying it and having more people say it in the process, hopefully our elected officials will hear this and that will lead to further discussion at another level.

REDISTRICTING COMMISSION ACTION (Tape location A464-514.)

SPEAKER 3: S. Clive Richard

On your map you will se Montezuma in the College Area and then you will see at the very far right a street called Reservoir. The neck right to the left of Reservoir where it intersects Montezuma is La Dorna Street so I can look down my street and look over to the hills. We're separated by Interstate 8, but more importantly, we're separated by Alvarado Canyon. It is not an issue of north and south of I-8. That's not an issue for me in any case. I have been represented well during the time I have lived in this area. I continue to be represented well by staff although we're separated. The difficulty I have and the reason I was kind of insistent on being called soon is that I have to catch a bus to get home. It's about a mile walk from the closest bus stop and it takes me an hour and a half to get from my house to here. This is a beautiful area. This is a difficulty. I don't envy your job. I live in the College Area south of Interstate 8. It is very inconvenient to this part of District 7, but the district has to grow so it would be very difficult to put the College Area in some other district. I can't think of any other district that I would want to see College Area changed to, even though it's an inconvenience because I know I can go to City Hall or I can call City Hall and I can talk to the representative from District 7 or talk to staff just as I could speak to the previous staff of that district. Again I don't envy your job and I hope that when you come up with something that you won't have to continue to do it several times so it's acceptable.

REDISTRICTING COMMISSION ACTION (Tape location A515-574.)

SPEAKER 4: Doug Case:

I live at Reservoir Drive in the College Area. I have lived in the College area for 27 years. I work at SDSU. I've been involved with the College Area Community Council and currently serve on the executive board. I am not representing that group tonight because we have not yet taken a position. I will be asking our board to take a position next week regarding this issue. I believe the College Area should remain in the Seventh District. I realize that I-8 is a somewhat natural boundary and that there are some very different types of planning issues and city issues that affect communities north of I-8 and south of I-8. The College Area has been part of District 7 for a long time, at least 30 years. We have some very unique and complex issues living in a community near a big university where you have an older community. The district is very involved in those issues. The people in the community have been very pleased with the quality of representation they receive from the Council Members and their staffs over the years. They have expertise in those issues, and we think it's important that we keep the College Area in District 7. That would be my first plea to you. Secondly, that you try to keep the College Area and the Rolando Area together. We are neighboring communities. We share many of the same issues and problems. Part of that is being close to SDSU another part is the impact of the revitalization of the El Cajon corridor through our communities. Both are very much affected by the success of that. The long-term health of our communities is dependent upon the revitalization of the El Cajon Boulevard corridor, and we need to be kept together as we address those issues. Those are my two pleas to you that the College Area remain in District 7 and the College Area and Rolando Area remain in the same district. To add people to District 7, Grantville should be included in District 7.

REDISTRICTING COMMISSION ACTION (Tape location B022-076.)

SPEAKER 6: Gary DeBusschere

I have lived in the College Area for many years. I would like to focus some thoughts in the District 7 south area, in particular some things that might be of some benefit to you concerning Talmadge. Talmadge is broken up, and as you know, there is a natural barrier in the census tract as you come down Collwood to El Cajon Boulevard and then if you look at City Heights East. City Heights East is actually in the City Heights planning world as opposed to the eastern planning world. What you have is a factor on 54th Street that you can look at too. But you're not losing people for District 7, but that's one factor. The key thing I wanted to point out is that if you look at the College neighborhoods and up from SDSU to the north and down to College Grove in the south, I think it is important to keep the continuity there and keep the economic development of those communities and census tracts together. I noticed that you have Oak Park down here. That actually should be Rolando Park. Oak Park actually has a natural barrier from the landfill, College Grove Shopping Center, and College Avenue and is specifically the southern portal to District 7 and also to the College neighborhoods. I think it is important from a planning point of view, from a police point of view, and from an economic point of view, to keep that College Avenue south off of I-94 in that same district connected to the College neighborhoods. That's one specific comment that might be helpful to you too.

REDISTRICTING COMMISSION ACTION (Tape location B080-102.)

SPEAKER 7: Keith M. Turnham

I reside at Golf Crest Drive, which is in San Carlos. I have only the evaluation since I've seen the maps tonight. As I look at the map on the wall, I see it easier than I do on the color chart you handed us. It appears to me that if you were to take District 7, the people who live in District 7, say on east of I-15, I'm in District 7, that's pretty nice because you don't have a boundary slipping back and forth between communities. If you came down I-15 on through Grantville including that Kensington part into whatever it may end up, I sense it would be easier for our council member to handle business as well as the fact we must gain almost 8,000 positions and with that being said we could incorporate the City Heights East group where you have the planning group split currently could be put into one area so you wouldn't have two different districts under one planning group. But I see it from my stand point of coming straight down I-15 the east side of that all the way and if that doesn't gain 8,000 seats then we can go slip it even further south.

REDISTRICTING COMMISSION ACTION (Tape location B103-122.)

SPEAKER 8: Deanna Spehn:

I've been a resident of Tierrasanta Murphy Canyon since 1972. I currently chair the planning group, and although we haven't taken a position, I can tell you that, as somebody that has participated in the planning group's interest for the last 26 years, ten years ago and 20 years ago the concerns of the community were identical and that was to keep the community of Tierrasanta Murphy Canyon in tact within a council district. We currently experience a split congressional district; the 49th and 51st both cover Tierrasanta Murphy Canyon. I cannot tell you how confusing that is, not only for the community but for the congressional representatives. It's helpful if you can keep a community entirely within a single district. One of the concerns that we have - and I also publish the newspaper in Tierrasanta - is 1600 proposed military homes going in at one of three sites just north of Tierrasanta within the current District 7 boundaries. I'm sure you saw the newspaper article in the Union Tribune last week about the fact that Murphy Canyon has the highest number of children per household of practically any community within the state. This would be consistent with housing that is similar to what is in Murphy Canyon now. Those 1600 units could probably generate 3500 to 4500 more people which starts to eat away at the number of new citizens that you need to add to shift within the district. We also have the Rancho Encantada project which is proposed also within the 7th District. If those two projects go forward, and we should know about the military housing in June, I would like to have you bear that in mind. One of my board members, Fred Zuckerman, you had a speaker slip in for him, had to go to another event and he asked if I could ask his questions on the record. He is treasurer, chief financial officer of the community council. His questions are: "Did I hear the chair correctly that the goal of the commission is to come within five percent plus or minus of the optimum population?"

Chairman Pesqueira: That's correct.

Question: "Is it also a goal to make districts homogenous with respects to economic status or is it a goal to keep each district as diverse as possible to more closely match the diversity of the entire city?"

Chairman Pesqueira: Let me turn to Lisa for a second and have her tell you what the City Charter says as far as what our charge is and how we look at the various districts.

Deputy City Attorney Lisa Foster: I wouldn't necessarily agree with the statements and the questions. The primary goal obviously is to equalize the various districts. Then there are additional considerations as far as what impacts we have on communities and groups in the process of equalizing the districts. It's very hard to boil this down into a simple statement because it's actually very complex, but there isn't necessarily a goal of making areas homogenous. There isn't a goal of making areas diverse. What we need to do in the process of equalizing the districts is to make sure we don't have a negative impact on racial groups under the Voting Rights Act that reduces their ability to elect candidates of choice. In other words, if we have a geographically compact ethnic group that is large enough to affect voting in their district, if we were to do something like split that group into different districts and thus reduce their ability to vote for candidates of choice, that could be a violation of the federal Voting Rights Act. We need to make sure we don't have that kind of a negative impact on an ethnic group, but other than saying that, I would not agree that there is necessarily any goal in this process related to making areas more or less diverse.

Question: The last question is, "Tierrasanta Murphy Canyon has had a close relationship with the Kearny Mesa Planning Area for many years, how do you treat Kearny Mesa which has very little population but large needs such as traffic, crime, code enforcement that has significant impact on the neighboring communities?"

Chairman Pesqueira: Joey will you pull out the map where Kearny Mesa is and its relationship to Tierrasanta and where the border is for the district?

The concern that we're raising is that what happens in Kearny Mesa directly impacts this community as well as Serra Mesa, but just to raise that to your attention.

REDISTRICTING COMMISSION ACTION (Tape location B124-193.)

SPEAKER 10: Levin Sy:

I'm a co-founding board member of the Southwest Center for Asian Pacific American Law. We're based in National City. We're a non-profit organization formed by concerned professionals from the San Diego legal, business and academic community to preserve and protect the rights of individuals who do not have adequate access to the legal system. We also provide a community education and conduct relevant research and policy analysis for the Asian and Pacific Islander communities of this region. I am here today with that last being in mind. What I wanted to talk about was the Asian and Pacific Islander community interest and make sure they get taken into consideration for redistricting. Furthermore, we want to make sure that the Voting Rights Act that protects our minority votes from dilution are not undermined in any way, or divided. What I wanted to do today was to go over where some of those communities are and to echo a lot of the comments that have been made here. We're here now close to Linda Vista. Linda Vista has an Asian Pacific American population concentration, has a large number of people in there, and is also divided right now within the 5th and 6th City Council Districts. I think for people that are living in Linda Vista, outside of the fact hat there is a large number of Vietnamese Americans there, for people that work with the Linda Vista Planning Group, I think they would tell you that is a community that should not be split. I grew up in Mira Mesa, a neighborhood north of here, and I am unable to join you at the Scripps Ranch meeting so I am here today. Part of the reason is that I'm also a graduate student at the UCLA School of Public Policy and Social Research. I have had ample opportunity to take classes and pursue research relevant to redistricting, actually partaking in map drawing myself. One of the reasons that I wanted to come today was to show how the City Council lines that were drawn in 1990 really split up the Asian Pacific American Community in this area. We wanted to show that those communities needed to be respected, and that they actually have shared interested and could elect representatives who would be responsive to the common interests and needs of all those communities. I wanted to go over some of the data that's recently been available with the 2000 census. One of the things I heard was that a computer is going to be available to us for folks that want to use it. This is a side note, but if you look at the data that is being provided by people in L.A. County, what we provide in this city is wholly inadequate to provide redistricting ability for community members here. We're being told that we can't draw based on race, yet the census data only calculates data based on race and voting age population. Some of the things that I would like the members here to consider would be to provide socioeconomic status available on those computers for our use here. I know there are a lot of individuals that are interested in drawing maps, those should be incorporated into the computer. Another factor that would be important for us to look at is voter registration data. Right now the San Diego -

Chairman Pesqueira: I want Joey to answer the question about socioeconomic data. As I recall that information will not be available for what, next year?

Joey Perry: Data from Census 2000 will not be available; however, we are anticipating using some SANDAG household income estimate information at the census tract level.

Chairman Pesqueira: So that is the difference. It will not be census data, but it will be data that is gathered by SANDAG which is a local research organization.

Levin Sy:

That would be helpful to citizens that are interested in this process. I think another factor that folks need to realize is that this is a very political process, yet we don't have any information on how people are turning out to vote or how people are registered. We don't have access, for example, on this map on how Democrats are registered to vote or how Republicans are registered to vote, nor do we have access to digital information on how people have actually voted in the past elections. This past election, 2000, I've actually been working in cooperation with SANGIS and they did allow me to access some of their data, and they've digitized the precincts and shown me where people came out to vote for a congressional race or a mayoral race; but for a student, $100 for data is steep and for community members that have come here on their own time, people have taken public transportation to be here to provide you all with input, we need to be able to provide more information to let them, provide information that would allow us all, to better contribute to the process. One other thing I wanted to talk about, aside from the Linda Vista Community, just other points where the Asian Pacific Island American Communities are, I think there is a gentleman here from Rancho Penasquitos. One of the things he stated was that their community did not want to be split. I think if you look at the Filipino American Community they also will tell you they do not want to be split. They might even want to be joined with other Asian Americans in Mira Mesa or Scripps Ranch. Outside of that Asian voting population, one thing they have in common is the development of the I-15 business corridor. The local chambers of commerce from Sabre Springs, Rancho Penasquitos, to Mira Mesa and Scripps Ranch to develop a community of interest around business concerns. Not only are they concerned about the traffic up and north on the I-15 freeway, but they also have development and business interests that have brought them all together. Now why is it that the Chamber of Mira Mesa has joined together with he Sabre Springs group? Why have they joined together with the Rancho Penasquitos group? Because they wanted to vote that region together. Economic development-wise, in terms of recruiting, they want to recruit businesses there. They want to make sure there is a friendly climate there, and there's infrastructure available for people that want to work there. I think that's another community of interest that people need to look at. I wasn't around during this time, but ten years ago community activists from the Filipino and Asian American community came before this body, the predecessors to this, the City Council in 1991. What they were concerned about was Linda Vista being split, and unfortunately that happened. Another area that really shows this community being split is in the East San Diego or Mid-City area there is a large Vietnamese and newer immigrant population there. They share similar lower economic status similar to the residents in the area that are both Latino and African American. Currently they are divided between the 3rd, the 7th, and the 4th City Council Districts. I think we believe based on the fact that they share common concerns, economic developments, they want to have access to jobs. They want to have access to adequate and affordable housing. Those are interests that bind those communities together not just based on race, but the fact they share similar common interest on socioeconomic status and also on quality of life issues. I think it is going to be very hard to say that those folks have a lot in common with people that live in Tierrasanta and Scripps Ranch. Those are some of the reasons we believe these three different communities, Rancho Penasquitos and Mira Mesa, Linda Vista and these communities in East San Diego need to be considered as API Communities that should not be split up. Under he Voting Rights Act, we should not dilute their votes. I think more importantly they contribute to their respective areas individually and the concerns that have already been brought up here echo the statements that those communities are in fact communities of interest, and they should be kept whole.

Commissioner Juan Ulloa: What would you suggest would make the best change for City Heights, if you want to unite City Heights? Where should they go what district do you think?

Levin Sy:

I think I'm unable to make that - my concern is completely with making sure that there are communities of interest that are kept intact. I don't want to offer you suggestions with what districts people should go in. My concern is that these communities need to be kept whole. What I would like to do to answer your question is if I had the information, if I had socioeconomic information, for example, how many renters are in the area? How many homeowners are in the area? That could be one variable you could use to link up certain communities. If you look at it there is a high proportion of renters in that area. Do you combine that with another community that has a high renter population or do you combine that with a high owner population? Those are significantly different issues for that community. Homeowners are more concerned with issues that lower the property values where as renters might not be as concerned with that. That would be one of the characteristics that I would look at. Another issue might be the number of limited English proficient children in the neighborhood. In that area, there are a lot of students that are limited English proficient or require bi-lingual assistance. That might be another criteria to determine whether or not those communities have something in common. I think schools and the quality of schools we provide are remarkably different throughout the city and that might be one way that we can find that out

Commissioner Leland Saito: When you are looking at your population concentrations of Asian Pacific Americans, you mentioned three areas. What about in the area here of eight, four, and three. Is there a Filipino population that is also scattered throughout that area?

Levin Sy:

There is a huge population right now in the Paradise Hills area. Unfortunately, they are right now within the Fourth District so that community isn't necessarily split up, but if you wanted to develop a district that would have those communities of interest combined with others, that would be a good pocket to do that with. The three areas that I pointed out were specific areas that the 1991 redistricting split, and those are areas I hope you consider, but I also hope you don't split up Paradise Hills.

REDISTRICTING COMMISSION ACTION (Tape location B196-335.)

Deputy City Attorney Lisa Foster:

At the request of Chairman Pesqueira, Deputy City Attorney Lisa Foster explains some legal concepts that the Commission must consider and the order of priority and factors which must be considered.

REDISTRICTING COMMISSION ACTION (Tape location B337-372.)

SPEAKER 11: Michael McSweeny

I'm the president of the Navajo Community Planners and the president of the Del Cerro Action Council. I would like to reiterate what some of other speakers have brought forward as far as points. Don't split communities. If the one thing you take away from this body this evening is don't split communities. The community that I represent on my planning board, we have four areas under our purview, San Carlos, Del Cerro, Allied Gardens and Grantville which is the business area of Allied Gardens. Those communities were developed and grew up about the same time over a 20 year period. When I look at how some of these districts are now and how they are split, if I were sitting on the Commission and I looked at District 7, I would subtract while I added. I would use I-8 as a boundary and I would eliminate the communities below it. I would use I-15 up to Scripps Poway Parkway. Scripps Ranch used to be part of the 7th District before the last reapportionment. As Ms. Spehn spoke earlier, you have potential Navy housing going in here. You have Rancho Encantada up here. There is a potential to add to Mission Trails Regional Park up here. I would say that looks like a nice 7th District to me. I think District 2 could move up into Pacific Beach so that community isn't split. I think District 1 can move north and inland so that you're not splitting where Mira Mesa and Sorrento Valley go together. I think where we have some real challenges are the communities south of I-8. When you look at how District 7, as I proposed it was developed, Tierrasanta was started in the early '70s. Scripps Ranch was started in the early '70s, so as far as a council member having to represent the constituents, if you put communities together that grew up and developed over a time period together the infrastructure needs are similar. In my neck of the woods you're talking late '50s to about 1970, '75. Tierrasanta, Scripps Ranch '70 to the present. When you take in communities south of I-8 some of those communities were developed in the '20s into the '30s and the '40s and '50s so you have a real mishmash. Some sewer lines are probably 70, 80 years old and you have other sewer lines that are less than 10 years old. I think when you look at the ability to apply for Community Block Grants, it's all based on census data. It's based on socio-economic data. Let's think outside the box for a second and get the most bang for our buck. We know that the communities south of I-8 need help. We shouldn't have to have in each council district somebody that is working on writing block grants. Let's get somebody in the city that can do that for those communities and possibly only have two, maybe at most three, council districts that take in those areas. I don't envy your job. I would like to say I personally appreciate the time. I know you all are volunteers.

REDISTRICTING COMMISSION ACTION (Tape location B375-428.)

SPEAKER IN THE AUDIENCE:

Over the last ten years we've seen the largest population increase in District 5, are you allowed to consider the developments that are in the formative stages that are being talked about if you know there is another 5,000 to 6,000 going in to somehow to blend them in?

Chairman Pesqueira: We are encouraged to take SANDAG's projections for the next two years and include those where it is conceivable to include them, yes.

Commissioner Marichu Magana: If you look at the whole of the City, Districts 1 and 5 are the ones that are really going to explode. Even if you were to increase 5,000 here in this district you still have to take away the 20,000 from District 5. Because again, within ten years, I predict that they will gain another 20,000.

Commissioner Mateo Camarillo: The message has come out loud and clear about keeping communities of interest intact; however, there are other priorities such as the one man one vote. There are eight districts and the more deviation from zero that you have by districts, the more susceptible you are to litigation. We want to be as bullet-proof as possible in doing a map that is not going to be challenged or if it gets challenged, it is not going to have a strong standing so that takes priority over Census tract X or community Y. The other is a federal law in reference to the Voting Rights Act and the protected populations that cannot be diluted in terms of the voting strength. That's a federal law, and we're going to obey that law. For example, in this specific community, your district, the southern part, is most susceptible to Voting Rights Act violations in terms of divisions of communities and dis-empowerment of communities especially in the southern portion of that. The most important is that we aren't dealing with one district at a time. We're dealing with the whole city, with eight districts and the balancing act. And the big picture, the southern part has to gain and the northern part has to lose. Something has to give in the middle.

Commissioner Charles Johnson: Someone mentioned CDBG and census tracts. That is something we looked at. We talked about that in one of our meetings. I am quite concerned about older communities being put together because that gives them strength and gives the city council folks more to work with when you have them all in one area. Yes, that is something we have looked at.

Commissioner Leland Saito: One of the interesting things that we look at when we look at projected growth and areas mentioned in Districts 1 and 5 and Otay Mesa and the kind of growth that might occur there, I think one of the quandaries we have is we can't even count people who are here right now. There is an undercount in the census. There is an undercount in every census, and those that are undercounted tend to be low income, non-English speaking in urban centers. Those tend to be Democrats so it is not unusual in a Republican administration to say we're not going to adjust the census. That's just one of the things we have to work with, is that we can't even count people that are actually here because of the undercount.

Commissioner Juan Ulloa: I wanted to ask Joey if the numbers are available for the socio-economic data and the voter registration data so that the community can have access to that as soon as possible or if not now, when will it be available and how and where can the public get that information

Joey Perry: Some of it is available currently and some of it is not. Most of the information that is available is not available for Census 2000 geography and so those are the census tracts that are designed for the geographic areas that we will have the population information for. We will have population demographic information from the 1990 census. We will have estimates that SANDAG has prepared in terms of socio-economic data, household income, family size. We can look at single family and multi-family housing. We can look at owner and lender occupied from the 1990 census. Certainly in terms of the voting information, we do expect to get some of the data. A lot of that data there is a little from the 1990 census tracts so that gives us a pretty good sense of where the information is.

Commissioner Juan Ulloa: I wanted to know when the community could have access to that information so that they can began to have an idea of the kind of testimony they can give to us in a more refined manner.

Joey Perry: After we get it. We have not yet received that information. We just got our software this past week and so we moved to learning to use the software and work with it and import as much of the information as we can import and we certainly, we'll be doing that. I'm hoping that by the first of June we can have all of our data sets complete so we can start crunching our numbers. Certainly everyone will be able to come in and crunch numbers too, once we get the data and know how to use it.

REDISTRICTING COMMISSION ACTION (Tape location B489-624.)

SPEAKER 12 Kevin Davis:

I live in District 3 and I wanted to respond to some of the questions that I heard earlier this evening. I've done a lot of research on this census and the redistricting, and the website for he City of San Diego Redistricting Commission has resource links that link to quite a number of organizations that have information. I haven't looked at it all but I'm sure there must be some that have socio-economic information. The County also has a redistricting website and they have different resources. I'm sure there is information there. The State Assembly has another website for redistricting and the State Senate as well. Amongst all the websites, I'm sure the information that people will be looking for might be available. Now, as far as voting information, I worked for a political organization in the county of San Diego. The Registrar of Voters has reports on line and there are files of plain text, voting results that show the voter turnout and voting results. Now, you have to input that into a data base, and you have to have a little familiarity, but if you go to the Registrar's office which is not far from here, or if you call or e-mail them, I'm sure they would be glad to work with you. As far as voter registration, you can buy a CD with all the registered voters for $400. That may be a lot of money, but there are a lot of organizations in town that have that information that might be willing to share it with organizations if they are approached. I think all the information that people are looking for is out there. You just have to know where to find it. I think a good place to start is at the websites for redistricting, especially the city.

REDISTRICTING COMMISSION ACTION (Tape location B625-C025.)

ITEM 14: ADJOURNMENT

Chairman Pesqueira adjourned the meeting at 7:55 p.m.

REDISTRICTING COMMISSION ACTION (Tape location: C026-C050.)

Ralph Pesqueira, Chairman
2000 Redistricting Commission

Esther Ramos

Legislative Recorder

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