Over the next couple months, the City will be exploring the opportunity to change to a district-based electoral system for selecting councilmembers. The City currently has “at-large” elections for five numbered seats. Our residents vote for all candidates running for a seat on the City Council, and the elected councilmembers represent the entire city versus a defined geographic district.
According to the California Voting Rights Act (CVRA), it prohibits the use of an at-large election in political subdivisions if it would impair the ability of a protected class, as defined, to elect candidates of its choice or otherwise influence the outcome of an election. The CVRA provides that a voter who is a member of a protected class may bring an action in superior court to enforce the provisions of the CVRA, and, if the voter prevails in the case, he or she may be awarded reasonable litigation costs and attorney’s fees. The CVRA requires a court to implement appropriate remedies, including the imposition of district-based elections, that are tailored to remedy a violation of the act.
For more information please see the California Voting Rights Act. On December 03, 2018, the City received a letter from Shenkman and Hughes, PC alleging that the current at-large method of election violates the CVRA. On January 15, 2019 the City Council considered transitioning to District-based elections. At this meeting, Council unanimously adopted a resolution of intent to transition from at-large to District-based Elections pursuant to California Elections Code Section 10010(e)(2).
During this process we want to hear from the voices that matter most to us, our community. We see this as an opportunity to grow and learn about how we can better serve our Campbell residents.
Documents Related to Transitioning to District Based Elections