City Attorney Mike Feuer Thursday named Carlos Moreno, a former California Supreme Court justice, federal judge and ambassador to Belize, as his appointee to the Los Angeles Redistricting Commission.
“The people of Los Angeles are extremely fortunate that Justice Moreno has agreed to serve on the city’s Redistricting Commission,” Feuer said. “Justice Moreno will be fair and open-minded in drawing these important district lines, putting the people’s interests first. The principles we set forth today will help ensure that the districts drawn are representative and accountable. Today I call on each of my fellow elected officials to ask their appointees to pledge to follow criteria like these.”
For more than 25 years, Moreno served at all levels of the state and federal judicial systems in California, including four years as a federal district court judge and 10 years as a justice on the California Supreme Court.
Moreno said he was honored to serve on the redistricting panel.
“Fair and equal representation in our City Council is essential,” he said. “This all starts with the fair and nonpartisan distribution of our population into council districts which share a community of interests, geographically, socially and economically.”
Feuer also announced the first-ever model principles for drawing City Council districts in what he said will be a fairer and more accountable way.
The principles Feuer presented are based on criteria adopted by the California Citizens Redistricting Commission, as well as those included in the City Charter, which are:
— districts shall comply with the U.S. Constitution and achieve population equality as nearly as practicable;
— districts shall comply with the Voting Rights Act;
— the geographic integrity of neighborhood council boundaries or local communities of interest shall be respected in a manner that minimizes their division to the extent possible without violating any of the preceding provisions. A community of interest is a contiguous population which shares common social and economic interests;
— to the extent practicable, and when this does not conflict with the criteria above, districts shall be drawn to encourage geographical compactness, such that nearby areas of population are not bypassed for more distant populations;
— the place of residence of any incumbent or political candidate shall not be considered in the creation of a map. Districts shall not be drawn for the purpose of favoring or discriminating against an incumbent, political candidate or political party; and
— the place of residence of any incumbent or political candidate shall not be considered in the creation of a map. Districts shall not be drawn for the purpose of favoring or discriminating against an incumbent, political candidate or political party.
The 21-member Los Angeles Redistricting Commission is responsible for drawing the district maps for each of the city’s 15 council districts and the seven of the Los Angeles Unified School District.