A commission of retired judges is set to take over redistricting in San Diego County starting in 2020. Governor Brown signed SB 1331 this week.
The law, which has taken the authority of redistricting away from the Board of Supervisors, will authorize the clerk of the Board of Supervisors to randomly select five retired state or federal judges who live in San Diego and are registered to vote. They would then draw the district lines.
The new law makes San Diego County the only county to not draw its own lines. The move towards an independent panel mirrors similar changes made to the state and federal elections by way of propositions.
In this case, the legislative change has some saying that the new panel will not be accountable to residents. The Supervisors are split on the idea as well.
Supervisor Greg Cox helped the idea be introduced into the senate in the first place. He took his proposal to Senator Christine Kehoe, who championed its passage through the Senate. But Supervisor Bill Horn says that the bill fixes something that wasn’t broken. It’s also made the County of 3.1 million people a very large guinea pig.
The panel of judges must hold seven public hearings and the final maps will be subject to a referendum.
Read the full story at the U-T San Diego.