The state’s redistricting has been completed (pending legal challenges and ballot initiatives) and the City of Oakland’s redistricting won’t happen until next year, so right now anyone who’s interested in redistricting should have plenty of time to focus on AC Transit and BART’s processes. In the coming weeks, both agencies are holding community meetings about redistricting so there should be plenty of opportunity to weigh in.
AC Transit recently released its redistricting proposals (at the bottom of this page), and for Oakland, no matter which proposal the Board picks, not much will change. Oakland right now is represented by four directors – two at-large and two representing districts. The at-large seats are not effected by redistricting at all, and the two district seats – Ward 2 (Greg Harper) and Ward 3 (Elsa Ortiz) don’t appear to be changing much at all. The boundaries between Ward 2 and 3 will shift by a few blocks, and the same will happen between 3 and 4. So chances are that no matter which proposal is picked (and there may be a compromise between the two), your director will not change.
As for BART, even though they’re starting to hold community meetings this week, I could not find proposed maps on their website. What I did find was a map that shows population stats by current districts, which suggests some of the districts will be changing significantly. Oakland currently has three representatives on the BART Board. In District 3, Bob Franklin represents Rockridge, Temescal, and parts of the Oakland hills. In District 7, Lynette Sweet represents West Oakland. And in District 4, Robert Raburn represents the vast majority of Oakland, from Broadway all the way through East Oakland.
District 3′s population is nearly at the exact point it should be at to make the districts even, just -0.4% from the ideal target population of 37,383. It’s an odd district, covering Berkeley, Oakland and Hayward. District 7 is a bit over the target, +3.8% and is also an odd district, covering Richmond, West Berkeley, West Oakland, and a South Eastern portion of San Francisco.
Though District 3 and District 7 aren’t too far from the ideal population target, District 4 is in located between both of them and is far below its population target: -9.2%. Since District 4′s boundaries, which now cover all of Alameda and much of Oakland, will need to grow, both District 3 and District 7 are likely to shift significantly as well.
If you’re interested in learning more and/or voicing your opinion about these redistricting processes, attend one of the upcoming community meetings. You can also find out much more on AC Transit’s redistricting web page and a bit more on BART’s page.
BART Redistricting Meetings
Wednesday, October 5th
6:30 pm – 8:00 pm
Joseph P. Bort MetroCenter
101 Eighth Street
Monday, October 10th
6:30 pm – 8:00 pm
San Leandro Library
300 Estudillo Avenue
AC Transit Redistricting Meetings
October 20 - 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Bayfair Mall Community Room
(Upper level near escalator, use Entrance 3)
15555 E. 14th Street
October 24 - 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
North Berkeley Senior Center
1901 Hearst Avenue
October 27 – 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
AC Transit General Offices
1600 Franklin Street