The U.S. Census Bureau today released detailed data on California that will be used by the state's new independent redistricting commission to draw new legislative, congressional and Board of Equalization districts for the 2012 elections.
The state's new official 2010 population, 37,263,308, was released in December and is a 10 percent gain over 2000. But details -- including census tract, city and county breakdowns, as well as those of income, ethnicity and other factors -- were not released until today.
The Citizens Redistricting Commission has until August to adopt new districts, replacing those that the Legislature drew in 2001. Widespread criticism of the legislative plan that it was a bipartisan gerrymander that ignored demographic changes, led to the ballot measure that shifted the responsibility to a 14-member commission that was chosen, partially by lot, from more than 30,000 applicants. The commission is composed of five Democrats, five Republicans and four independents. A majority of each group was agree to a final plan, which is subject to court challenges.
The new census data are available here.