Studio City Council district faces reshuffle

LOS ANGELES, CA – A year-long process to draft a new map of Los Angeles’s 15 council districts using 2020 census data reached the city council on Tuesday, with council members presenting a collective of 38 motions to transform the card project.

The city council also voted 14-0 to create the ad hoc redistricting commission to direct its efforts to make adjustments to the map. Council President Nury Martinez has previously criticized the Redistricting Commission’s draft map for creating drastic changes that have “confused and alienated thousands of people”.

Commission Chairman Fred Ali called the project “a product of unprecedented public participation, which involved more Angelenos than ever before.”

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He said 15,000 people offered comments during the process and noted challenges during the process, including the COVID-19 pandemic, census data delayed by five months and a “historic undercount of some communities” in this data.

Councilman Paul Krekorian, who is facing the possibility of representing an all-new district, spoke the most during the council meeting, asking Ali and commission executive director Frank Cardenas about their process.

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Ali and Cardenas said some of the commission’s priorities are to unify Koreatown into a single council district, to have five full districts located in the San Fernando Valley — which has about 30% of the city’s residents — and to use the borders already used by the district councils. .

“I just want to conclude on this point that there can be great things in this process for the rest of the city, but this one thing of creating these two neighborhoods that the commission couldn’t even decide who should represent, is enough on its own to bring back the whole drawing of the San Fernando Valley maps,” Krekorian said.

On October 21, the commission voted to finalize its recommendations for a draft map of the council’s revised district boundaries, but did not designate which district would be District 2 and which would be District 4. According to the recommendations, the one would end up with entirely new voters, called Council District 4-or-2 in the western San Fernando Valley, while the other would have Council District 2-or-4, which includes parts of their two districts – Hollywood Hills, North Hollywood, Valley Glen and part of Los Feliz.

“Voters in the Fourth District and voters in the Second District selected their candidates of choice a year ago, and the outcome of these cards would be to take those choices away from those voters,” Krekorian said.

Councilman Nithya Raman represents parts of Silver Lake, Los Feliz, Hollywood Hills, Hancock Park and Sherman Oaks, among other neighborhoods. Krekorian represents East San Fernando Valley neighborhoods including North Hollywood, Studio City and Sun Valley.

Krekorian introduced a series of motions to move portions of other proposed districts into the Council 4-or-2 District and Council 2-or-4 District designations, including the Sun Valley communities of Glen Crest Hills, the Van Nuys neighborhoods of Katherine Circle and Katherine Square, and the area bounded by Roscoe Boulevard, Whitsett Avenue, the railroad tracks, and Laurel Canyon Boulevard.

He and Raman also offered to leave Council District 4-or-2 and in Council District 3 the areas of Winnetka, Canoga Park and Woodland Hills, and in return, Sherman Oaks would move to Council District 4-or- -2 council district. 3. Krekorian also sought to move Valley Village from Council District 3 to Council District 2-or-4.

Councilor Mitch O’Farrell introduced a motion, which was seconded by Raman, to move the boundary between Council 2-or-4 District and Council 13 District to the Atwater Village area of ​​the highway. Golden State (5) at Los Angeles River Center.

Councilor Curren Price moved a motion to change his district’s recommended boundaries, including moving the fairgrounds from Councilor Marqueece Harris-Dawson’s Council District 8 to his District Council’s District 9, which currently holds this district.

Harris-Dawson also introduced a motion, this one to move from Price District to his district the area bounded by West Adams Boulevard, Ellendale Place, West 29th Street, Vermont Avenue, Exposition Boulevard, Harbor Freeway, Jefferson and Hoover Street.

Other motions to adjust the boundaries recommended by the commission were presented by council members Gil Cedillo, Mike Bonin, Martinez, Monica Rodriguez, Bob Blumenfield and Kevin de Leon.

As council members seek to redraw their districts, there have also been calls, including from the Redistricting Commission itself, for the redistricting process to be handled by a fully independent body.

“This commission over the last year has confirmed that the quasi-independent nature of the advisory commission just doesn’t work,” Ali said. “It’s time for an independent, rather than advisory, commission to take responsibility for redistricting for the good of our city.”

The commission also called for the number of council districts to be increased to “better create council district boundaries that reflect the 99 ward councils and 114 wards in the city”.

Ali said it would have helped serve the community of Watts, which was seeking to be moved from Council District 15 to Council District 9. “, which include San Pedro, Harbor City, Harbor Gateway and Wilmington.

Ali said the commission wanted to move Watts, but residents also wanted the neighborhood to remain unified, and it “proved impossible” to move such a large neighborhood to another neighborhood without moving other neighborhoods.

The Redistricting Commission uses U.S. Census data to update the city’s districts, with each Council member getting about 260,000 people to represent. The council will have the opportunity to make changes to the map before adopting the final borders for the 15 districts which will come into effect on January 1.