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A proposal for a new voting area

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By Norihito Ikeda / Staff Writer

RCCD (Allison Perez / Photo Editor)

By Norihito Ikeda / Staff Writer

A special forum was hosted by the Riverside Community College District Board of Trustees March 1 to discuss district trustee areas.

The population in Riverside County has changed and RCCD has to reflect the population shift increase, and possibly add several trustees to the board.

The forums were also held at Moreno Valley College Feb. 27 and at Norco College Feb. 29.

During the forum at RCC, the trustees talked about how to set boundaries in order to balance the voting population within the District.

The reason for new district areas is that the RCCD needs balanced voting districts.

According to California Voting Rights Act, the total population difference between the largest and the smallest trustee area cannot be over 10 percent.

However, the population within the RCCD area is unbalanced between cities.

Justin Rich, an associate director who works for planning school districts in Dolinka Group, said that the population has recently changed within RCCD, so it will become roughly proportional.

The total population within RCCD is approximately 950,000.

The top of three largest population areas are Riverside, Moreno Valley and Corona.

About 30 percent of the total population is in Riverside, 20 percent is in Moreno Valley and 15 percent is in Corona.

The rest of the population is in Eastvale, Jurupa Valley, Norco, Perris and unincorporated Riverside County.

The Board of Trustees is working with the Dolinka Group to fix the areas of population without collapsing communities of interests and identities.

Four scenarios which indicated possible trustee areas were shown.

Scenario A contains Eastvale, Norco and Northern Corona in the same area and is the early favorite.

Scenario B is almost the same as Scenario A with a little exception.

Scenario C also has five trustee areas, but it combines Corona with Western Norco and splits Riverside horizontally.

Scenario D contains seven areas which divide Riverside into four areas. Each scenario has well-balanced population areas.

During the meeting, two of the trustees stated their views of these scenarios.

“Riverside City is just too big, too much population, over three hundred thousand,” Trustee Mary Figueroa said.

She suggested it should have been spread into at least two areas.

Trustee Virginia Blumenthal said she and Trustee Figueroa agreed that Scenario A was better because communities of interests came together.

Some participants supported Scenario A after they heard the discussions.

Allison Dale, who came from Woodcrest, said that she preferred Scenario A because it remains Norco, Moreno Valley, and Eastvale though it divides Corona.

“They are keeping community’s interests together as much as possible,” she said.

Norm Godin, who is vice president of Business Services at RCC, also chose Scenario A.

“It does not divide communities as much as the other scenarios,” he said.

Jan Schall, the director of the  Study Abroad program for RCCD, said that she probably preferred Scenario A and did not prefer Scenario D.

“I like the way it keeps particular communities in touch,” Schall said.

 

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