Assemblymembers Weber, Gloria propose reforms for San Diego County elections

The Center on Policy Initiatives is a proud supporter of both bills.

Press Release from Councilmember Todd Gloria

San Diego Legislators Author Legislation to Reform San Diego County Redistricting Commission, Move to November Run-off Elections

SACRAMENTO, CA – California State Assemblymembers Shirley N. Weber (D-San Diego) and Todd Gloria (D-San Diego) announced dual legislation today that would reform County of San Diego elections. The two bills, AB 801 and AB 901, co-authored by Assemblymembers Weber and Gloria, would revamp the County of San Diego’s redistricting commission and allow races for County Board of Supervisor to be decided in the General Election as opposed to the Primary. 

To ensure fairness in the drawing of districts, AB 801, introduced by Assemblymember Weber, would require that the County of San Diego Citizens Redistricting Commission, responsible for drawing supervisorial districts, be comprised of members who reflect the diversity of the county’s population. This would apply to supervisorial districts. 

While my husband was a judge, panels of judges are likely to come from a similar socioeconomic background and live in certain parts of the county,” said Assemblymember Weber. “If you want the diversity of perspectives necessary to ensure fairness, you are more likely to find that by drawing from a pool of qualified citizens rather than judges.” 

AB 901, introduced by Assemblymember Gloria, would authorize the charter of the County of San Diego to mandate Board of Supervisor candidates be elected at the General Election.

 Decisions about who will serve the public and lead our government should occur when voter participation is at its highest. That is undeniably during the General Election and not the Primary,” said Assemblymember Gloria. “It is imperative that the results of our elections are reflective of the needs and priorities of our population at-large. Further, by aligning county elections with city, state, and federal election timelines, we can effectively reduce voter confusion and encourage participation.”

In San Diego County, voter turnout for the 2016 June Primary was 50.94% according to the County Registrar of Voters. For the General Election, voter turnout was 79% — almost 30% higher.

In addition, voters in the City of San Diego overwhelmingly passed Measures K and L during the General Election with 59% and 65% support respectively. Measures K and L amended the city charter to require November elections for candidates and ballot measures, thus repealing the 50%-plus-one rule for the Primary and aligning city elections with federal and state elections.

Assemblymember Shirley N. Weber represents the 79th District of California and serves as the Chair of the Budget Subcommittee on Public Safety. The 79th Assembly District includes the cities of Chula Vista, La Mesa, Lemon Grove, National City, and San Diego.

Assemblymember Todd Gloria represents the 78th District of California and serves as an Assistant Majority Whip. The 78th Assembly District includes the cities of Coronado, Del Mar, Imperial Beach, San Diego, and Solana Beach.