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L.A. City Council Set to Vote on Redistricting Map

The fate of parts of Studio City and Toluca Lake are still unresolved.

The Los Angeles City Council is set to vote Friday on a proposed new map of the members' 15 district boundaries.

Those boundaries -- recommended by the City Council's Redistricting Commission -- would be in place until after the next census in 2020.

The map is the product of months of contentious public and private meetings by the commission that drew the ire of some neighborhood councils and the threat of a lawsuit by two City Council members unhappy with the results.

Chief Legislative Analyst Gerry Miller recommended that the map be approved with 18 changes, including a move to keep all of Westchester in Councilman Bill Rosendahl's coastal district.

The Rules, Elections and Intergovernmental Relations Committee will take up the map during a morning session, followed by discussion by the full City Council at 10 a.m.

Miller's report leaves the fate of parts of Studio City, Toluca Lake, Stonehurst and an area north of Adams Boulevard between Normandie Avenue and the Harbor (110) Freeway unresolved. See: The New Battle for the Campo de Cahuenga—Studio City vs. Toluca Lake

The Wilshire Center Koreatown Neighborhood Council and other Korean community organizations want Koreatown to be united in Councilman Eric Garcetti's 13th District.

The Korean American community amassed hundreds of people to attend redistricting hearings in recent weeks to push for the changes. However, the commission placed most of Koreatown in Council President Herb Wesson's 10th District.

Korean American Coalition Executive Director Grace Yoo said the group will sue to block the maps if changes are not made.

City Council members Bernard Parks and Jan Perry submitted an alternate citywide map. They have repeatedly argued that the commission's map is not legally defensible. The two have appeared on radio shows in the last week seeking to make their case that the Redistricting Commission failed to heed public testimony and used race as a factor in moving boundary lines without proper study required under the Voting Rights Act.

An attorney for the two council members sent a letter to the city threatening a lawsuit if the commission's map is approved as is.

Under the new map, Parks would lose the black neighborhoods of Baldwin Hills and Leimert Park to Wesson's district. Parks would also lose the University of Southern California to Perry, who would lose the lion's share of downtown and Little Tokyo to Councilman Jose Huizar.

"The head has been cut off from the body. For the last 70 years downtown Los Angeles has been connected to South Los Angeles, and as the representative of the area I've been able to leverage private investment with public funds to build two new grocery stores, 5,000 units of housing, bring in 90,000 new jobs," Perry told KTLK AM 1150 radio host Josefa Salinas this morning. "This relationship has been terminated by the redistricting commission under the leadership of Mr. Wesson."

Wesson declined to comment on the map, but spokesman Ed Johnson said the council president is backing a change that would move part of Baldwin Hills, which includes Parks' home, back into Parks' district from Wesson's. It would also give the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Mall back to Parks, refuting claims his district would be left without an economic engine.     If the map is approved, the city attorney will draft an ordinance to finalize the district boundaries before a June 1 deadline.

Alex Daniels March 16, 2012 at 05:30 AM
The name of the game of LA politicos is to allow the continued slicing and dicing of the communities and ther respective unified voices all in the name of allowing our DWP and union purchased LA council-clowns to continue to run this city into the ground unchallenged and all in the name of special interest...
ray March 16, 2012 at 07:25 AM
My condo is on the border of Wesson's district in Koreatown. Let it go into district 13. It is no secret that Koreatown is used like an ATM to subsidize projects for South LA's part of Wesson's district. While Koreatown is littered and graffitied and now many parts look worse than South LA. WTF? Wesson don't underestimate Koreans. We took down China, a nation 50 times bigger, when they tried to conquer Korea. You will fall hard.
ray March 16, 2012 at 07:35 AM
Its ridiculous! The roads in Koreatown are HORRIBLE. Theres TRASH GRAFFITTI DIRTY EVERYWHERE. Yet the money is taken from the businesses, property taxes here, and used to fund projects in Herb Wesson's major voters South LA area. Now most of his South LA district looks BETTER than Koreatown! All while elderly Koreans are getting hit by buses, dying, with no senior citizen services. Children whose needs are not met. Piss urine potholes everywhere. Herb, let it go. It can get worse. Trust me.

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