In November, voters in a state ballot will decide on a radical plan on the division of California into three states, California’s Secretary of State has confirmed.
The campaign called Cal-3 has garnered 808,000 signatures. The initiative group behind the move claimed to have 1.3 million signatures.
Venture Capitalist Tim Draper, who is behind the initiative says splitting the state would lead to improvements in infrastructure and education while lowering taxes:
“States will be more accountable to us and can cooperate and compete for citizens,” Draper told the Los Angeles Times last summer.
According to the project, posted on the Cal3 website, the state of California will consist of six coastal districts, including Los Angeles, Santa Barbara and Ventura.
Northern California will consist of 40 districts from Santa Cruz to Oregon, including San Francisco and Sacramento, the current state capital.
Southern California will include 12 counties, including Fresno, Kern, Orange and San Diego.
Draper says: “California is rotten, we must give our people the strength to improve the government.”
Opinion polls show that only 17% of the state’s population supports the idea of its splitting with 72% against it.
If the plan is adopted – that is, approved by the judicial authorities and the US Congress, this will be the first division of the US state since 1863, when West Virginia was created. California, since its inception in 1850, has faced more than 200 attempts at division, reform and the change of administrative boundaries.
Opponents of the plan argue that it will lead to the creation of three powerful lobbying groups – instead of the existing one.