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The Promise of Fair Maps

California’s 2020 Local Redistricting Cycle: Lessons Learned and Future Reforms

Authored by Nicolas Heidorn

With the 2020 local redistricting cycle concluded, this report takes a step back to evaluate the effectiveness of the FAIR MAPS Act and related independent redistricting commission reforms at encouraging meaningful public participation and promoting the adoption of maps that better reflect and empower a jurisdiction’s diverse communities.

The report explores five key areas of the redistricting process — timing, transparency of the process, public participation in the process, line-drawing criteria, and the use of independent and advisory redistricting commissions — that significantly changed this cycle compared with prior cycles.

Serving as the report of record for the 2020 redistricting cycle, The Promise of Fair Maps proposes solutions to the biggest issues identified for creating an inclusive and participatory democracy through redistricting.

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