EL CAJON – The Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District board has approved a new elections process beginning in 2012 in which the five trustees will be selected by voters in their area instead of being elected districtwide.The district’s Governing Board approved the trustee-area elections and the boundary maps for the districts at their Dec. 13 board meeting following two public hearings. No one spoke at either hearing.
Trustees have been elected at-large by voters in the more than 1,100-square-mile East County district that stretches from the East County cities of El Cajon, La Mesa, Lemon Grove and Santee to the Imperial County line. District elections will begin with the June 2012 primary. If no candidate receives a majority of the votes cast, the top two vote-getters in the primary will face each other in the November 2012 general election.
The college district is one of many government agencies around California that are revising their elections process to comply with the California Voting Rights Act of 2001. District elections help ensure that minority populations are equitably represented at the voting booth.
The college district hired consultants from National Demographics Corp. to draw up the maps creating five trustee areas with approximately equal populations. Almost 465,000 people live in the Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District, with about 90 percent of them residing west of Alpine. According to the 2010 census, the district is 60 percent white, 25 percent Hispanic, 7 percent African-American, 5 percent Asian and 3 percent other.
In drawing the boundary lines, the consultants considered factors including already-established communities such as the East County cities, natural boundaries such as canyons or highways, and creating trustee areas with compact, contiguous territory as much as possible.
The five trustee areas are:
- District 1: Santee, Winter Gardens and Lakeside (incumbent Edwin Hiel)
- District 2: La Mesa, Mt. Helix, Casa de Oro and Rancho San Diego (incumbent Debbie Justeson)
- District 3: El Cajon (incumbent Bill Garrett)
- District 4: rural East County, including Alpine and most of Jamul, all the way to the Imperial County line (incumbent Mary Kay Rosinski)
- District 5: Lemon Grove, La Presa, Rancho San Diego, Spring Valley and a small portion of Jamul (incumbent Greg Barr)
More information about redistricting, including the proposed district maps and census data, is available at www.gcccd.edu.