Commission works to finalize redistricting
CHATTANOOGA (WRCB) – Hamilton County Commissioners say they have nearly completed redistricting for the county.
Every ten years, the commission must reevaluate the district lines to make sure the population is evenly distributed among the nine districts, based on the latest Census numbers.
According to state regulations, the population each of the districts must be within 10 percent of the other districts.
"In the past 10 years, the population has shifted eastward," said Greg Butler with the county's geography and mapping department.
The fastest growing district of the past decade has been District 9, which comprises the entire eastern edge of the county.
"I had to give up 7,200" said District 9 Commissioner Chester Bankston, referring to the population shift of his district under the newly redrawn lines.
The Commission is also hoping to consolidate voting precincts, some of which only had a handful of voters.
"We have one precinct with two voters," District 1 Commissioner Fred Skillern said, "neither of had actually ever voted."
The Commission is expected to bring the final redistricting plan up for a vote at the Commission meeting on Thursday.
Once the Commission determines the district map, the Election Commission will establish voting precincts for the new districts. The Election Commission will then send the new districts to the state to certify they comply with state regulations. After the districts are certified, they must be approved by the state legislature.
Channel 3 Eyewitness News has requested a copy of the proposed redistricting map. Once the county responds to that request, that map will be included here.