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Frequently Asked Questions

 
  • What is Redistricting?

    Redistricting is the process of adjusting district lines every 10 years after the release of the U.S. Census in accordance with the California FAIRMAPS Act and the Long Beach City Charter.  The last time redistricting occurred in Long Beach was in 2011 when the City Council adopted the current map after directing staff to conduct the process.
  • Why should I care about redistricting?

    Council District maps determine who you can elect for your district. The maps drawn in 2021 create the stage for the next decade. Districts must be made as equal in population as practicable so that communities have equal access to political representation. If districts are redrawn to keep communities intact, people are better able to elect representatives who will further their interests. Participating in the process is crucial for your community.

  • What is a Community of Interest (COI)?

    A Community of Interest is a contiguous population that shares common social and economic interests that should be included within a single district for purposes of its effective and fair representation.

  • How do I describe my community?

    The Independent Redistricting Commission needs to know:

    • Name of your community
    • What binds it together or creates its shared identity
    • Where is it located?
    • In what ways would keeping your community intact in new district maps enhance the quality of its representation?
  • Why do we have an Independent Redistricting Commission?

    On November 6, 2018, Long Beach voters approved Measure DDD – City of Long Beach Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission. Measure DDD amended the City Charter to create a Commission of Long Beach residents to determine the boundaries of Council Districts every ten years after the national census.

  • Who Makes Up the Commission?

    The Long Beach Independent Redistricting Commission consists of 13 Commissioners and two (2) alternates selected for 10-year terms.

    Each Commissioner went through an extensive application and review process. The City Clerk widely publicized the Commission application and screened each applicant for eligibility. The City’s Ethics Commission then reviewed the applicants and created a sub-pool of 30 applicants. The first nine (9) Commissioners were randomly selected and were then tasked with selecting the final four (4) Commissioners and two (2) alternates.  More information on the commissioners is available here.
  • How can the community become involved?

    Community members are encouraged to participate in the Long Beach Independent Redistricting Commission Meetings submitting written comments using eComments or emailing redistricting@longbeach.gov.

    In addition to regularly scheduled commission meetings, the Long Beach Independent Redistricting Commission is required to have meetings in each of the nine council districts where the local community can provide input on their communities of interest and views on the redistricting process. 

  • How can the public submit maps?

    Members of the public will be able to create and submit maps using the online mapping tool to create communities of interest maps and create citywide/individual district maps. 

    For more information see: http://www.longbeach.gov/redistricting/maps/

  • What impact does redistricting have on City Council seats?

    The Long Beach Independent Redistricting Commission is tasked with drawing district boundary lines for each of Long Beach’s nine (9) City Council Districts. The work of the Commission will determine where a candidate needs to reside when running for office.

  • Does the city draw districts for the school board, community college or other local jurisdictions?

    The Long Beach Independent Redistricting Commission does not decide district boundaries for any other local jurisdictions.  Each agency will be responsible for their own redistricting. 

  • What is the timeline for completing the Redistricting process?

    By Federal Law, the US Census data is required to be delivered to states by the end of March. Due to the pandemic and delays within the Census Bureau, the 2020 Census is not expected to be released until September 30th, 2021. 

    The Commission is required to have final maps drawn within six (6) months of the release of data, but these and other deadlines will have to be adjusted in concert with the State and Los Angeles County Registrar.

  • What will community outreach involve?

    Prior to the release of the census data the commission will hold nine (9) public meetings in each current Council District to receive public testimony on communities of interest and encourage the use of the online mapping tool.

    After the census data is released and the commission releases draft maps, the community will be asked to give input on these plans. Any maps being considered by the commission will be made available to the public seven (7) days prior to being discussed at a hearing.

  • How Will The New District Boundaries Get Approved?

    The Long Beach Independent Redistricting Commission has the exclusive authority to approve the new District boundaries. The map will be adopted within six (6) months after the census data is released by the federal government, and the Commission will create a final report explaining its decision.
  • What happens if the Commission does not adopt a final map?

    If the Commission does not adopt a final map by the deadline, the City Attorney will petition the Superior Court to draw the final City Council District lines.

  • How can I find my new district?

    The final map approved by the Commission will be available at the Long Beach Independent Redistricting Commission’s website and will remain accessible throughout the decade.

  • What was the process regarding the allocation of unpopulated census blocks to districts during the last process?

    On March 22, 2011, City Council adopted criteria for their redistricting process. The 17th criterion was “Redistricting should focus on areas of population, and not on areas of non-population (parks, businesses, etc.).” The intent of the criteria was to focus on areas where residents live to discourage the grabbing of important resources that do not have residents, such as economic employment centers and parks. During the 2011 redistricting process, this criterion was largely followed, and nearly all of the lines drawn focused on areas of population.

  • Can Commissioners Participate in Canvassing Neighborhoods?

    Per the City Charter, commission members may not communicate with or receive communications about redistricting matters from anyone except at a public meeting or through the process established for accepting written public comment. Commission members are allowed to engage in public education and outreach, including explaining how the Commission functions and encouraging public participation in the redistricting process. However, as the IRC approaches the mapping hearings, the community may have feedback beyond inquiring how the commission functions and how to participate. In order to avoid any potential charter conflicts, staff does not recommend commission members canvass neighborhoods.
  • May census blocks be split, whether populated or not?

    Under Charter section 2506(b)(7), “The Commission shall draw its final map so that…[a]ll lines must correspond to census blocks in order to preserve the validity of data and avoid arbitrary boundaries.”

Submit your Community of Interest Form

Use your voice to help the Commission create a list of Communities of Interest by submitting a form today!