The City of Novato has changed the way that City Councilmembers are elected with the adoption of Ordinance 1650. Previously, all five Councilmembers we elected at-large, meaning that all registered voters who reside in Novato had the opportunity to vote for all five City Council positions.
At their May 14, 2019, the Novato City Council voted unanimously to select map #114 to define Novato's districts. Under the new district-based election system, all five Councilmembers will be elected by district. Councilmembers will be required to live in the district that they represent and will be elected only by the registered voters of that district. All five Councilmembers will continue to participate and vote on citywide matters regardless of what district they represent.
Novato Local Elections
The local elections on November 5, 2019 will include Districts 1, 3 & 5. Only voters residing in these districts will be voting to elect one Councilmember for their district to serve a 5-year term.
Voters residing in Districts 2 and 4 will vote for their district's Councilmembers in the 2022 local elections. Currently, the Councilmembers residing in these districts were voted into office in November 2017 for 5-year terms.
What's My District?
Check out the interactive map tool below to see which district you live in and which councilmember represents you. Novato District Map (PDF)
In February 2019, the City received a letter from an attorney, alleging racially-polarized voting in Novato. Pursuant to California Elections Code section 10010, a city can avoid even the filing of a lawsuit if, within 45 days of receiving a demand letter, it adopts a resolution of intention to move to district-based elections and, within 90 days thereafter, it adopts a district map for use in future elections. Although the City in no way concedes the allegations in the demand letter, and in order to avoid the high cost and burden of needless litigation, on March 12, 2019, the City Council adopted a resolution outlining its intention to transition from at-large to district-based elections, including specific steps the City would undertake to facilitate the transition, and an estimated timeframe for doing so. On May 21, 2019, the City Council adopted Ordinance 1650, which created the new district-based election system. A copy of the adopted map is provided with the ordinance.
All five Councilmembers will be elected by district. Councilmembers will be required to live in the district that they represent and will be elected only by the registered voters of that district. All five Councilmembers will continue to participate and vote on citywide matters regardless of what district they represent.