CVRA By-Trustee Area Election
What Is the California Voting Rights Act of 2001?
The California Voting Rights Act of 2001 (CVRA) expands on the federal Voting Rights Act of 1965. There was a concern that the at-large election process does not provide minorities and protected classes with the opportunity to elect their candidates choice based on the grounds that they dilute the strength of minority voters.
It added Elections Code Section 14027 which provides:
An at-large method of election may not be imposed or applied in a manner that impairs the ability of a protected class to elect candidates of its choice, or its ability to influence the outcome of an election, as a result of the dilution or the abridgment of the rights of voters who are members of a protected class.
What are Area Elections?
Candidates must reside within the District’s boundaries and are elected by all the voters who reside within the District’s boundaries. (Education Code Section 5030(a).) *This is the current method used by the DPOL District
From-Trustee Area Elections
Candidates must reside in specific geographic areas within the District’s boundaries called “Trustee Areas,” but are elected by all the voters who reside in the District’s boundaries. (Education Code Section 5030(c).)
By-Trustee Area Elections
Candidates must reside in specific Trustee Areas within the District’s boundaries and are elected only by the voters who reside in the same Trustee Areas. (Education Code Section 5030(b).) **This is the only method immune from liability under the CVRA
What Is the Process for Transitioning to By-Trustee Area Elections?
Three different procedures can be used to change from an at-large trustee area to a by-trustee area election process:
- Initiated by petition of the electorate;
- Initiated by the county committee; and
- Initiated by resolution of the district (“District-initiated”) (Education Code Section 5019(c)(1).) *This is how DPOL will transition to By-Trustee Area Election. Resolution 20-21-17 was adopted on May 20, 2021, Regular Board Meeting Initiating Process of Establishing Trustee Election Areas.
August 19, 2021, Regular Meeting
(Pre-map) Public Hearing #1 to solicit input from the public "regarding the composition of the districts" (i.e., trustee areas).
September 16, 2021, Regular Meeting
(Pre-map) Public Hearing #2 to solicit input from the public "regarding the composition of the districts" (i.e., trustee areas).
District distributes/posts on website the draft trustee area maps created by demographer.
November 18, 2021 - Regular Meeting
(Map review) Public Hearing #3 to solicit public input on draft maps of trustee areas and the proposed sequence of elections.
December 16, 2021 - Regular Meeting
(Map review) Public Hearing #4 to solicit public input on draft maps of trustee areas and the proposed sequence of elections.
January 20, 2021 - Regular Meeting
(Final Map adoption) Public Hearing #5 Adopt Resolution Adopting Trustee Area Map and Changing Election Method and Sequencing of elections.
County Committee on School District Organization conducts public hearings within District boundaries.
County Committee on School District Organization approves trustee areas and election method change.
New areas transmitted to Registrar of Voters.
First trustee area elections were held. There is no immediate impact on the term of any current member of the District’s Governing Board. (Education Code Section 5021). Instead, all future elections would occur in the trustee areas in which the Board members whose terms are expiring currently reside.
Meeting dates and times are subject to change.