By Betsy Graves Mahan
Chair, Sacramento County Republican Party
June 10 is the opening of the application period for the Citizen’s Redistricting Commission. For 60 days, California voters with no vested interest in the outcome, may seek to be one of the 14 people who will draw the district lines for the House of Representatives, the State Assembly and Senate, and the Board of Equalization.
What is the 2020 Citizens Redistricting Commission?
Following the federal census, California must redraw district boundaries to reflect the State’s population. California voters authorized the creation of the Commission when they passed the Voters FIRST Act in 2008, adding Congressional districts in 2010.
The Commission will have 14 members: five Democrats, five Republicans, and four members who are either registered without a party affiliation, or with another party.
How are the Commission Members Selected?
The nonpartisan California Auditor’s office is charged with forming an Applicant Review Panel consisting of three independent auditors. The panel will review all applicants and will select 120 of the most qualified from the three categories e.g. 40 Democrats, 40 Republicans, and 40 not affiliated with the major parties. All 120 applicants will be interviewed by the panel.
Following the interviews, 60 of the most qualified applicants will be chosen from the three categories. Those names will be provided to the majority and minority leadership in the California Senate and Assembly. Each of these leaders may remove up to two applicants from each category.
The remaining applicant names will then be part of a random drawing resulting in eight members – three Democrats, three Republicans, and two not affiliated with the major parties. These eight members of the Commission will then select the final six members – two from each category.
Who can Apply to be a Commissioner?
Following is a summery of the requirements to serve on the Commission:
- Registered voter since July 1, 2015
- Registered with the same political party or registered NPP or with another party since July 1, 2015
- Voted in at least two of the last three statewide elections
- For the past ten years, applicant or an immediate family member has not been appointed to, or been a candidate for federal or state office
- For the past ten years, applicant or an immediate family member has not served as an officer, employee, or paid consultant of a political party, including serving on a County Central Committee
- For the past ten years, applicant or an immediate family member has not served as an officer, employee, or paid consultant of a candidate for elective federal or state office
- For the past ten years, applicant or an immediate family member has not been a registered federal, state, or local lobbyist
- For the past ten years, applicant or an immediate family member has not served as a paid congressional, legislative, or State Board of Equalization staff
- For the past ten years, applicant or an immediate family member has not contributed $2,500 or more to any congressional, state, or local candidate for elective public office in any year.
Members of partisan clubs are not excluded, and delegates to political party conventions may also apply as long as they do not hold an officer position.
How To Apply
Between June 10 an August 9, 2019, visit shapecaliforniasfuture.auditor.ca.gov to learn more and apply.
Helpful Materials You Can Share
Provided by the CA Auditor’s Office