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In Lodi, new political maps draw mixed reviews

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Posted: Friday, June 10, 2011 11:03 am | Updated: 11:37 am, Mon Jan 9, 2012.

Under a draft released Friday, San Joaquin County's new congressional district keeps the county mostly intact, as most local officials wanted.

However, the Lodi area stands to have split representation at the state Capitol if the maps of California's Assembly and state Senate districts are approved in August. That's not sitting well with local political and business leaders.

The California Citizens Redistricting Commission released new legislative maps for congressional, Assembly, state Senate and board of equalization districts.

The congressional map keeps Lodi and most of San Joaquin County within a single district, and the proposed district goes as far west as Antioch and includes much of the Delta.

But the proposed Assembly and state Senate maps are another story completely.

The Lodi area could very well lose Assemblywoman Alyson Huber, D-El Dorado Hills, who grew up in Lodi, with the new maps. Huber would have to move into San Joaquin or eastern Contra Costa County if she wants to continue representing Lodi after the 2012 election.

Instead, Lodi stands to be in Assembly and Senate districts with the largest cities being Fairfield (population 103,211), Vacaville (96,154), Lodi (64,899) and Woodland (57,080). Santa Rosa, which would be included in Lodi's Senate district, has a population of 167,815, but it isn't clear how much of Santa Rosa would be located within the district.

Tim Reardon, Huber's chief of staff, said that Huber is likely to remain in El Dorado Hills and seek re-election there.

Furthermore, Lodi, Galt and western rural areas would be in one Assembly district. The communities of Victor, Lockeford, Clements and eastern Acampo would be in a different one.

In the state Senate, the Lodi area appears to be split in half. The Lodi city limits and rural areas to the west would join Solano County, the Napa Valley and eastern Santa Rosa.

Victor, Lockeford and Clements would join Stockton, Tracy, Manteca, most of Modesto and even Turlock in a separate Senate district.

Lodi Mayor Bob Johnson said it appears that Lodi will continue to be chewed up by not having local representation. For example, former state Sen. Chuck Poochigian represented Lodi even though he lives in Fresno, Johnson said. Tom Berryhill, the area's current state senator, lives in Oakdale.

Johnson said he expects to comment on the maps at next Wednesday's Lodi City Council meeting after reviewing them more thoroughly.

Other Lodi-area officials were critical of the draft maps.

"At the state level, we don't have good representation for our area because we will be diluted," said Pat Patrick, president and CEO of the Lodi Chamber of commerce. "We need local representation, not representation from three or four counties away."

The Chamber will encourage a letter-writing campaign to the redistricting commission and encourage commissioners to change their minds, Patrick said.

Michelle R. DiGuilio, of Stockton, one of 14 members of the California Citizens Redistricting Commission, acknowledged on Friday the need to revisit Lodi's legislative boundaries. However, DiGuilio added that potential critics of the draft maps need to come up with a solution as well.

"I am the mother of four small kids, and I hear whining all day long," DiGuilio said.

If you add 62,000 people from Lodi to another district, then state law requires that the commission subtract an equal number from the proposed district, she said.

Earlier this year, the San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors adopted a resolution requesting that the redistricting commission come as close as possible to placing San Joaquin County into single congressional and state Senate districts, and into two Assembly districts.

Galt

Galt will have its own set of boundary quirks. The congressional, Assembly and state Senate lines appear to have the Galt city limits in one district and rural areas west — such as McFarland Ranch — in different districts.

Under the proposal, the city of Galt will share a congressional district with Herald, eastern Elk Grove, Rancho Cordova, Folsom and Citrus Heights.

In the state Senate, Galt would be in the same district as Lodi, Solano and Napa counties, and parts of Santa Rosa.

Galt's Assembly district would also include Lodi, the Delta, Solano County, Woodland and Winters.

Galt Mayor Barbara Payne and Vice Mayor Marylou Powers said they had not had not reviewed the maps on Friday.

Contact reporter Ross Farrow at rossf@lodinews.com.

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4 comments:

  • Joanne Bobin posted at 1:10 pm on Mon, Jun 13, 2011.

    Joanne Bobin Posts: 4308

    Way to be sensitive toward people who suffer from mental illnesses, BTW.

    What exactly is "bipolar mental disease" anyway?

     
  • Doug Chaney posted at 8:58 am on Sat, Jun 11, 2011.

    Doug Chaney Posts: 1232

    This looks like a real mumbo jumbo to me also. If the senate redistricting holds true, however, Lodi's wine baron's will get the once in a lifetime chance to become another Napa, as I recall one greenbelt championing former council person state over and over again. With the Napa valley being in the same district, maybe Lodi could adopt Napa as its California "sister city" and share Napa's secrets on how to become a wine tourist destination?

     
  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 1:14 pm on Fri, Jun 10, 2011.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9403

    I wonder if the criteria for determining the boundaries is public record? Maybe having bipolar mental disease was a prerequisite to be eligible for this citizen committee.

     
  • Jackson Scott posted at 12:30 pm on Fri, Jun 10, 2011.

    Jackson Scott Posts: 382

    This sounds crazy. I gotta get a look at this map draft.

     

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