Number of district maps swell in Encinitas

With less than two weeks before the Encinitas City Council is set to choose its future electoral districts, the number of district maps proposed by the city and public has increased dramatically.

When the City Council unveiled the first draft district maps Oct. 11, there were five. Now, there are 22 maps, 16 created by residents and six created by city staff.

The Council will discuss the maps Monday at a special meeting.

Here are some of the highlights:

  • Most of the maps, 13, would divide the city into four council districts, eight of the maps contain five council district, while one is a six-district map.
  • Three of the maps are drawn so that each of the districts touches the ocean and El Camino Real, which they council originally said was their desired concept.
  • Nine of the maps contain a long “eastside” district, which connects Olivenhain with inland Cardiff along Manchester Avenue.
  • The map with six districts would divide Cardiff into a coastal and an inland district, and combine Leucadia east of Interstate 5 with a portion of New Encinitas, while maintaining Coastal Leucadia,
  • Two of the maps would not qualify because the populations are not balanced.

Encinitas is one of several cities and school districts that is considering changing the way the public can elect their officials amid legal threats from a Malibu-based law firm. Encinitas voters currently elect their council members in citywide elections.

The firm, Shenkman and Hughes, has alleged that the “at large” electoral system favored by many cities and school districts in North County disenfranchises Latino voters by diluting their voting power.
The special meeting takes place at 6 p.m. Oct. 30 at City Council chambers, 505 S. Vulcan Avenue.

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