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San Ramon releases potential district maps for public consideration

Six maps in all: Four created by city demographers, two submitted by the public

In their continued efforts to overhaul the city’s local election system, San Ramon city officials have released its first round of maps that will be used for upcoming district elections, and will be seeking public input for upcoming City Council meetings discussing the issues.

San Ramon has published four potential maps made by demographers contracted by the city, each dividing the city into four distinct geographical districts, one for each sitting council member, as well as two potential maps submitted by the public.

In summation of the new voting system, under district-based elections residents will only vote for a candidate who lives within their geographic district, essentially meaning residents can only vote for one council seat every four years, instead of all available council seats every two years as is the case under at-large voting -- the city’s former election method.

In order to install district-based elections, city demographers have created its four maps -- named Plan Blue, Plan Purple, Plan Red and Plan Green -- with the intent of creating districts that contain “communities of interest,” or areas that share similar concerns, issues and have similarly sized populations.

All city maps generally follow along similar borders dividing the city into square blocks of San Ramon’s main regions.

For example all four options have established the Dougherty Valley as its own area of interest, and each map has been drawn so sitting council members will not face off against one another in the upcoming 2020 election.

However borders between districts do fluctuate from neighborhood to neighborhood in each option, and require careful study

It should be noted that all population and demographic data was gathered using information from the 2010 census, and regardless of whichever map the city selects, districts will most likely need to be redrawn once more up-to-date information is collected from the 2020 census.

Residents interested in viewing each map that has been proposed by the city and the public, or learning more about the city’s transition to district based elections from its previous system of at-large voting, are encouraged to visit the San Ramon district election web page.

The San Ramon City Council will meet to review potential maps and further discuss district elections at its regular meetings on April 23, and May 14. Both meetings will be held 7 p.m., at City Hall, 7000 Bollinger Canyon Road.

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