Dear Redistricting Commissioners,
The non-profit Citizens Planning Association, representing residents from throughout Santa Barbara County, has supported sound land use policies on the Central Coast since 1960. As such we have seen many redistricting plans. We supported establishment of an independent redistricting commission.
Previously we advocated for a map which would provide for the fewest changes to balance population and comply with the Voting Right Act. As such we supported map 816B, which provided many appealing qualities, while creating a CVAP district of 60%. We are thankful that this is still under consideration. This map moves the fewest number of people, honoring Chumash heritage lands stretching from the Santa Ynez Valley, to point Conception and the Gaviota Coast to the Goleta slough. We also found much to admire about Map 818.
We listened carefully to the testimony of community that Guadalupe and western Santa Maria should be united, as they are in Map 818. A member of our organization, JL Duncan has submitted a modified map which seeks to bled the most admirable things of both Map 816B and Map 818 to address this issue. The new map is DistrictR 84365 – shown below with the current district showing.
With the exception of the Cuyama Valley and Guadalupe area, this map maintains most of the population centers in their current districts. It does shift the unincorporated areas around Vandenberg Space Force Base to another district, however this allows each district to “touch the coast.” This map honors the Chumash request to preserve the connection between the Santa Ynez Valley and the Gaviota Coast from the Goleta Slough to Point Conception, and keeps the watershed of the Santa Ynez River substantially unified.
It also maintains Isla Vista/UCSB & UCSB’s west campus many alignments with the Gaviota Coast, and it is logical to keep these areas connected within one supervisorial district. UCSB now owns a Las Varas Ranch on the Gaviota Coast, and it is logical to keep those parcels together. Likewise, UCSB has many academic connections along the coast up to and including substantial research at the Dangermond Preserve. This area should remain in a contiguous district.
Again, we urge you to make as few changes as possible to meet the requirements of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
Thank you for your attention to this important matter.
Marell Brooks, President
For Citizens Planning Association