Fresno City Council is moving forward with new district boundaries, which keeps the districts relatively similar to how they were the past decade while ensuring that central Fresno’s District 7 will not be landlocked.
The council supported the map, titled Public 111, on a 6-0 vote on Thursday. Councilwoman Esmeralda Soria, who participated in the hearing, did not ultimately cast a vote.
The City Council will officially approve the map at the next meeting scheduled for Dec. 9.
Public 111 was the recommended selection by city redistricting consultant National Demographics Corporation.
“In the last 10 years, the largest growth has occurred in District 5, 4, 6, 2 and 1, requiring District 7 and District 3 to expand in order to balance out the populations and ensure that everyone has a more equitable representation with equal population across the city,” Councilman Miguel Arias said.
Jeff Tilton, a senior consultant with National Demographics Corporation, gave a presentation and noted that Public 111 has a population deviation of just 1.2 percent, unites Highway City in District 1, eliminates a landlocked district, maintains three Latino majority citizen voting age population districts and meets federal and state law, as well as the city charter.
Since District 7 has been landlocked since its inception in the 1990s, the council made it a priority to adjust the lines to allow it to now stretch to the eastern edge of the city, providing opportunities for all districts to expand.
Meanwhile, the greater Tower District region is split into three council districts, with much of it absorbed into the new District 3.
The population for each district ranges from 77,108 to 78,042, keeping the population deviation within less than one percent of each other.
Districts 3, 5 and 7 maintain their status as Latino majority citizen voting age population at 52 percent, 51 percent and 52 percent, respectively.
For raw population, Districts 1 (55.5 percent), 3 (62 percent), 4 (50 percent), 5 (59 percent) and 7 (63 percent) all have majority Latino residents.
In District 2, the Latino and White populations are tied at 37 percent, while 50 percent of District 6 is white while its Latino makeup comes in at 26 percent.
The city’s largest Black population will be in District 1, with 10 percent, and the 23 percent Asian-American population in District 5 is the most in Fresno.