Redistricting 2011 Criteria

The Redistricting Commission has adopted the following criteria to use in designing the new Council districts:
 

Issues of Equality and Fairness

1. Equal Population – Under the federal mandate of one-person one-vote, each person’s vote is equal to that of any other person; therefore, districts must be equal in population.  Arizona state law also speaks to this criterion stating that districts should be “nearly equal.”
2. Adherence to the Voting Rights Act – The rights of minority communities should be respected and not be abridged.  This means that minority communities must not be improperly packed or divided, and a full faith effort should be made to assure opportunities for minority representation.  Race cannot, however, be the primary criterion in drawing boundaries.
3. Compactness and Contiguity – Arizona statute requires that districts “shall consist of contiguous territory in as compact form as possible.”

Councilmanic Districts

4. The City Charter requires that, “The redrawing of district boundaries shall not remove the residence of an incumbent Councilmember from the district he was elected to represent during his term in that office.”

Good Government Criteria

5. Respect Community of Interest – Self-identifying communities should be recognized and kept whole to the extent possible; and community centers (e.g., schools) should be used wherever possible in revising districts.
6. Follow Natural and Man-Made Boundaries to the Extent Possible – This is to assure ease of access, recognizable boundaries and to give respect to existing geography.
7. Citizen Input – Citizen opinions should be expressed through the use of citizen kits, at public meetings and hearings and through the City’s hotline and should receive due consideration in the redistricting process.
8. Population Growth – Recognizing that the 2010 Census was taken more than one year ago and that the City continues to grow, to the extent possible population growth should be factored in when creating the revised boundaries.
9. Existing Districts – Mesa established its current district plan in 2001.  Because of rapid population change, it will be impossible to prevent significant change in the existing boundaries; but, nevertheless, there is an advantage to both citizens and their representatives in maintaining to the extent possible the general configuration of the current plan.


 

Redistricting map

 
If you are interested in participating in the process, have questions or would like to provide comments on the Redistricting Plan recommended to Council e-mail redistricting@mesaaz.gov or call 480-644-2397.


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