RAFU STAFF REPORT
Dan Mayeda, co-chair of the Los Angeles County Citizens Redistricting Commission (CRC), encouraged the public to voice their opinions as the commission solicits ideas on how to adjust the district boundaries for electing the Board of Supervisors for the next decade.
“It’s important that we hear from folks about their communities of interest,” Mayeda said.
Lines are being drawn in accordance with data from the 2020 Census. For the first time, as a result of state legislation passed in 2016, the supervisorial districts are being drawn, independent of the Board of Supervisors, by a commission of qualified applicants. Each district has approximately 2 million residents. Because of the size of L.A. County, supervisors are among the most powerful local officials in the entire country.
The redistricting commission is required to draw five districts that are geographically contiguous and have equal populations. L.A. County CRC is currently holding public hearings to gather input.
At the local level, periodic redistricting can help to:
▪ Ensure L.A. County’s diverse population and communities have opportunities to have their voices heard
▪ Enable voters to elect representatives of their choosing and not draw supervisorial districts in such a way as to dilute fair opportunities
Mayeda is one of 14 commissioners and serves as co-chair. He is the associate director of the Documentary Film Legal Clinic at UCLA School of Law.
Mayeda has been a longtime advocate for accurate and sensitive depictions of Asian Americans in the media. He is the longest-serving member of the Board of Directors of East West Players, the country’s premier Asian Pacific American theatre organization, which was recently recognized as one of “America’s Cultural Treasures.”
Since 2000, he has helped lead a national, multi-ethnic coalition of civil rights and media activism groups to advocate for greater diversity, equity, and inclusion in Hollywood and in the media. Mayeda has also served as pro bono legal counsel for Koreisha Senior Care and Advocacy.
He said the composition of the redistricting commission mirrors the population of L.A. County.
“In the case of supervisors, we are reflective of the partisan split of L.A. County, so there are more Democrats than Republicans and a certain number of decline-to-state,” he said.
CRC is required to vote on a final redistricting by Dec. 15. Once finalized, the CRC will file the final redistricting plan with the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk.
Mayeda said he was looking forward to the process and hearing from community members.
“It’s kind of like a jigsaw puzzle, move one thing and it might create imbalance with another,” he said. “I’m sure we’re going to make some people upset. All we can do is be transparent and do the best we can. It’ll be fun.”
A schedule of meetings and other ways to submit comments is available at redistricting.lacounty.gov.