City of Santa Barbara Bracing for the Inevitable: Losing in Court

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

The city of Santa Barbara is bracing for the inevitable change to district elections after the at-large voting system for its city council election was challenged under the Voting Rights Act. According to the Santa Barbara Independent, the city has approved $400,000 to hire a notable voting rights attorney, not to win its lawsuit, which is scheduled to go to trial soon, but to prepare a new district map and perhaps negotiate a settlement. City officials point out two cities that lost in similar challenges; Palmdale and Whittier.

Like many local jurisdictions around the country, formally homogeneous populations are changing rapidly into multi-ethnic communities with growing Hispanic or other minority populations. When this happens, the old way of electing representatives; usually in at-large elections, becomes a hindrance to those growing minority populations. This situation is ripe for vote dilution lawsuits under section 2 of the Voting Rights Act. Yakima, Washington is another example.

Tagged as: ,

Categorised in: Lawsuits, News, Redistricting

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: