Sentinel staff report–
Confusion about who could vote in the Nov. 7 Special Election in Citrus Heights resulted in some voters wondering why they weren’t sent election information in the mail — and some learning on Election Day that they weren’t eligible to vote due to new trustee area boundaries.
Following a decision two year ago, the formerly five-member school board increased its ranks to seven, and created seven distinct trustee areas to make up the San Juan Unified School District’s governing board.
Unlike prior years when trustees were elected at-large by voters in the entire district, candidates must now reside in the specific area they seek to represent. Voters from each area now select one resident from their area to represent them on the school board, and are not allowed to vote for candidates in other areas of the district.
The new trustee map includes the Area 7 seat which follows the boundaries of Citrus Heights in the northwestern portion of the school district, but doesn’t include the entire city. Another adjacent seat (area 5) largely covers Orangevale but also includes the portion of Citrus Heights east of Mariposa Avenue in the north and east of Sunrise Boulevard in its southern boundaries. A small portion of Citrus Heights is also included in areas 4 and 6.
The seat up for election in this year’s Special Election was the Area 7 seat, which meant Citrus Heights voters living south of Greenback Lane or in some eastern portion of the city could not vote, due to the new boundaries for the area.
In 2021, the Citrus Heights City Council formally voted in favor of a resolution supporting the school district’s transition to by-trustee-area elections and increasing the board size to seven members. Several council members cited a history of the city lacking representation on the school board, and expressed hope that a new seven-member trustee map would be adopted to give Citrus Heights a guaranteed seat at the table.
According to the city’s resolution, prior to the school district’s transition to by-trustee-area elections, it had been roughly two decades since a resident of Citrus Heights served on the school board.
Sentinel staff report--
Confusion about who could vote in the Nov. 7 Special Election in Citrus Heights resulted in some voters wondering why they weren't sent election information in the mail -- and some learning on Election Day that they weren't eligible to vote due to new trustee area boundaries...
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