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The stakes are high over at the San Diego Redistricting commission, which is busy drawing up brand new lines for the city's eight traditional city council districts, plus a new one authorized by voters when they approved the city's so-called strong mayor reform package last year.

One big bone of contention has been who to use for technical support, figuring out population in each district proposal, setting up online software for the citizenry to send in their own border boundaries, etc. Many redistricting experts have ties to particular parties and ideologies, such as the conservative Rose Institute, and thus are suspect by their opposite numbers.

Here's a take on that:

http://www.claremontconservative.com/2011/04/why-was-rose-institute-disqualified.html

One way to glean what's going on below the radar without the filter of local media is to refer to the "communications records" of commission chief of staff Midori Wong and chairwoman Anisha Dalal, as well as the other commissioners, posted on the commission's website.

Some excerpts:

Wong:

"Attended happy hour event and answered informal questions on Commission timeline"

Returned call to political consultant Adrian Kwiatkowski "re: inquiry into potential outreach consultant services being procured by Commission"

"Answered questions re: Census units ‐ tracts vs. blocks" for Linda Perine of the LGBT Redistricting Task Force

Commissioner Arthur Nishioka:

Contact with Gary Brown of Mayor's staff: "Greeting and question if Commission meeting was over during elevator ride from 11th floor to 1st floor. My answer was that the meeting was over."

Contact with Joseph Walker of Mayor's staff: "Exchange of social pleasantries before the start of the regular Commission meeting."

Commissioner Dave Potter:

Contact with Jan Fuchs of Carmel Valley Planning Board: "E‐mail regarding recent presentation to the Board. Concerned about a proposal to split Carmel Valley and Pacific Highlands Ranch out of District 1. Advised them to write a letter to the Commission and/or attend meetings and express their view."

The most recent full list of contacts for Wong, Dalal, and other commissioners can be found here:

http://www.sandiegoreader.com/documents/2011/may/11/chief-staff-communication-record/

http://www.sandiegoreader.com/documents/2011/may/11/2010-redistricting-commission-communication-record/

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