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A sign outside the County Administration Center in El Centro points to an early polling site for the November 2020 General Election. Early voting is available for the Sept. 14 gubernatorial recall election. | FILE PHOTO

PREVIEW: Elections, Redistricting Coming Up for Imperial County

In just about a month, Imperial County will be part of a statewide election to decide if Gov. Gavin Newsom should be recalled. 

Ballots will start to be mailed out next week to all registered voters in Imperial County. 

Less than two months later some areas of the county will head to the polls again to vote for county water or school district board members or a utility tax.

Eleven total positions on the Meadows Union School District, Salton Community Services District, Seeley County Water District and Winterhaven County Water District boards will be up for election in November, as well as Measure U utility users’ tax in Brawley.

“The timeframe between the date the Sept. 14 Gubernatorial Recall Election was announced and Election Day is a very small window for elections staff to prepare for a countywide election,” wrote Gilbert Rebollar, county public information officer, in an email. “However, I am confident we will be able to meet all deadlines to administer this election.  At the same time, we are planning for the Nov. 2 Consolidated Election which is much smaller in size.

“Plans are currently being developed to educate voters on the elections, early voting opportunities, Election Day procedures, etc.,” he stated.

Ballots will be mailed countywide to all registered voters for both the Sept. 14 recall election and all registered voters within the respective districts up for election for the Nov. 2 consolidated election. Recall ballots will go out the week of Monday, Aug. 16.

See Who Will Appear on Recall Ballot

County Has Tight Timeframe for Redistricting

Imperial County officials are also working on plans for how different districts will look for the next 10 years. 

The county is spearheading efforts to redistrict, or the way districts are changed that determine who represents people in the region. 

A first look at local level raw data is set to go to each state later this week, said Intergovernmental Relations Director Rebecca Terrazas-Baxter. The county has already started building a timeline that will be brought to the Imperial County Board of Supervisors later this month. There are meetings planned and at least six public hearings to discuss redistricting plans, she said. The goal is to have districts drawn out and voted on by mid-November to have them in place by the legal deadline of mid-December.

“It’s going to be tight,” she said. “We’ll have to have back-to-back meetings for two and a half months.”

The Board of Supervisors has solicited applications for individuals to serve on the redistricting commission, according to Rebollar.