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Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Census Data Will Likely Signal Loss of Political Power for Bay Area

From the Bay Citizen,
With the much-anticipated release of 2010 census data for California expected Tuesday, the San Francisco Bay Area faces the prospect of ceding political clout to its upstart neighbor: the fast-growing Central Valley.

The dramatic population shift under way in the state, redistricting experts say, will make plain that the Bay Area should probably lose a district. The population in the ascendant Central Valley has grown roughly 15 times as fast as the population in the San Francisco Bay Area over the last decade, according to federal population estimates.

In past years, powerful Democratic lawmakers from the Bay Area would have vehemently resisted any efforts to hand over a district to the more heavily Republican inland area. But the power to line-etch is now the province of the newly formed Citizens Redistricting Commission, created by a voter-approved initiative in 2008. The 14-member panel this year will try to combine communities that share common social, economic and other interests as it redraws California's Senate, Assembly, State Board of Equalization and congressional districts.
Read more at Bay Citizen

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