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District Advisory Committee sets May 5 Community meeting

Mike Conway

Post Date:04/30/2015

For immediate release

Contact: Mike Conway: 209-385-6232

Districting Committee announces community meetings, kits

Tuesday, May 5, 6:30 p.m. Tenaya Middle School, 760 W. 8th St., Merced.

Tuesday, May 19, 6:30 p.m., Merced Senior Center, 755 W. 15th St., Merced.

Saturday, May 30, 2 p.m., Rivera Middle School, 945 Buena Vista Dr., Merced.

FONT-FAMILY: 'Arial','sans-serif'; COLOR: #333333; mso-fareast-">The Public Participation Kit will be used during the community meetings to help people define their neighborhoods and communities of interest. They also are available online for people who can't attend the meetings but would still like to offer their ideas on the districting process. The kits contain background information and instructions on how to sketch out a map of a district, or districts, in Merced.

FONT-FAMILY: 'Arial','sans-serif'; COLOR: #333333; mso-fareast-">People who can't attend the meetings can still tell the Committee about their community in writing.

FONT-FAMILY: 'Arial','sans-serif'; COLOR: #333333; mso-fareast-"> 

FONT-FAMILY: 'Arial','sans-serif'; COLOR: #333333; mso-fareast-">They can drop off or send information to the committee at the City Clerk's Office:FONT-FAMILY: 'Tahoma','sans-serif'; style= mso-fareast-">

FONT-FAMILY: 'Arial','sans-serif'; COLOR: #333333; mso-fareast-">Merced Independent Districting Advisory Committee

c/o Merced City Clerk's Office

Merced Civic Center

678 W. 18th Street

Merced, CA 95340

FONT-FAMILY: 'Arial','sans-serif'; COLOR: #333333; mso-fareast-">

FONT-FAMILY: 'Arial','sans-serif'; COLOR: #333333; mso-fareast-">People with questions can call: (209) 385-6834FONT-FAMILY: 'Tahoma','sans-serif'; style= mso-fareast-">

FONT-FAMILY: 'Arial','sans-serif'; style= mso-fareast-">On Nov. 4, 2014 voters approved Measure T amending the Merced City Charter to change the at-large election system to a single member district system. Voters in each district will elect a Council member to represent them. Three seats will be north of the Burlington Northern and Santa Fe Rail line and three will be south of the rail line. The Mayor's seat will continue to be elected in a city-wide at-large election.

FONT-FAMILY: 'Arial','sans-serif'; style= mso-fareast-"> 

FONT-FAMILY: 'Arial','sans-serif'; style= mso-fareast-">The Independent Districting Advisory Committee will create two district maps for recommendation to the Merced City Council, which will select the final district boundaries.

FONT-FAMILY: 'Arial','sans-serif'; COLOR: #333333; mso-fareast-">There are federal and state legal requirements that will guide the map-making process, plus some criteria that are specific to Merced. The US Constitution requires districts contain roughly equal population and it and the federal Voting Rights Act (VRA) prohibit racial discrimination. The federal Voting Rights Act also prohibits practices that have a discriminatory effect, such as at-large elections or districts that make it harder for a racial or language minority group to elect a representative of choice.

FONT-FAMILY: 'Arial','sans-serif'; style= mso-fareast-">District elections will take effect in the November 2016 elections.,'serif'; mso-fareast-">

FONT-FAMILY: 'Arial','sans-serif'; COLOR: #333333; mso-fareast-">For the most updated schedule and information, please check the City's website, which contains information about the Committee at

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