2013-city-of-santa-maria-logo-colorThe City of Santa Maria will be holding two public hearings, one on March 7th and another one on March 21st, to explain the process of transitioning to district elections and to hear from members of the public on their ideas of drafting the district maps.

Both hearings will be held during regular City Council meetings on Tuesday, March 7th and Tuesday, March 21st, at 6:30 p.m. in the City Council Chambers, Santa Maria City Hall, 110 E. Cook Street. A total of five public hearings will be held.

The City Council on February 21st launched the process to convert its elections from the current at-large voting system in place since 1905, to a district-based process.

The City has hired a demographics and elections consultant along with an attorney that specializes in district-based elections. The consultant will explain what is redistricting, and how new voting districts must meet certain requirements such as equal population, ethnic makeup, current neighborhoods, geography, and other factors. How many districts to be created will ultimately be decided by the City Council upon the conclusion of the five public hearings.

City staff anticipates the districting process to be done by the end of May. The first district-based election is to be held in 2018, when two City Council seats will be up for election, followed in 2020 by the remainder of the five-member Council.

For transparency and to encourage participation, the City is maintaining a new webpage at www.cityofsantamaria.org/districtelections.

Questions may be directed to the City Manager’s Office, 925-0951 ext. 2372.

 

Department:                        City Manager’s Office
Contact Person:                  Mark van de Kamp, PIO/Management Analyst II
Telephone Number:           (805) 925-0951 ext. 2372 or 720-4038
E-mail Address:                    mvandekamp@cityofsantamaria.org