City Charter Section 1301 requires the City Council to create an Independent Redistricting Commission (IRC) composed of three retired judges who do not reside in Santa Barbara County. Following the 2020 Census, the IRC must adopt a redistricting map, and refer the map for mandatory Council approval. A redistricting map divides the City into six electoral districts which are approximately equal in population, and which comply with extensive state and federal voting rights protections.
The Census Bureau has delayed the release of redistricting data until late summer 2021. Once these data are processed and posted to the web with an easy-to-use mapping tool, a series of community hearings will be conducted to gather information on redistricting.
The IRC was appointed by the City Council on March 30, 2021 and consists of a panel of three California judges (retired).