Voters may cast ballots on splitting California into six states in 2016

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July 16, 2014

By Brittany Clingen

California

Californians may get the chance to weigh in on whether to splinter their state into six smaller ones come November 2016. Timothy C. Draper, a venture capitalist based in Silicon Valley, submitted signatures for the "Six Californias" Initiative on July 15, 2014.[1] He reports to have submitted 1.3 million signatures, well above the approximately 808,000 required to land the measure on the ballot.[2]

"California needs a reboot. Six Californias is our opportunity to solve the many problems we face today... Six states that are more representative and accountable. Six states that embrace innovation and strive to improve the lives of residents," Draper said.[3] Chipping in $4.9 million, he is currently the sole contributor to the ballot measure's committee.[4]

Unsurprisingly, his plan to dissolve the state into six has met with opposition. Though the group has not yet received any contributions, Joe Rodota, a Republican strategist, and Steven Maviglio, a Democratic consultant, have established an organization called One California to battle Six Californias.[5]

Even if the measure is certified for the ballot and approved by voters in 2016, the California Legislature and the United States Congress would ultimately make the decision about whether to dissolve California into six states.[6]

The measure, in its current form, divides California into the six following states:[7][8]

  • Central California, which would include the counties of Alpina, Calaveras, Fresno, Inyo, Kern, Kings, Madera, Mariposa, Merced, Mono, San Joaquin, Stanislaus, Tulare and Tuolumne.
  • Jefferson, which would include the counties of Butte, Colusa, Del Norte, Glenn, Humboldt, Lake, Laasen, Mendocino, Modoc, Plumas, Siskiyou, Shasta, Tehama and Trinity.
  • North California, which would include the counties of Amador, El Dorado, Marin, Napa, Nevada, Placer, Sacramento, Sierra, Solano, Sonoma, Sutter, Yolo and Yuba.
  • Silicon Valley, which would include the counties of San Mateo, Santa Clara, Alameda, Contra Costa, San Francisco, San Benito, Santa Cruz and Monterey.
  • South California, which would include the counties of Imperial, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino and San Diego.
  • West California, which would include the counties of Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Los Angeles and Ventura.

See also

References