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Committee approves redistricting plan
Voting districts to be realigned
Mike Foster w sm
FOSTER
The DeKalb County Commission’s redistricting committee has voted to approve a new plan for realigning voting districts to meet state requirements for population in the county’s seven districts based on 2010 census numbers.The committee recently met with GIS Manager for the State Comptroller of the Treasury Office of Local Government David Tirpack, who helped members formulate a plan to bring the districts into alignment.Some residents will find themselves in another district for the upcoming elections, and will be represented by different school board members and county commissioners, will vote for a different constable, and will cast ballots at a new voting precinct.All 14 members of the county commission, as well as Director of Schools Mark Willoughby and Administrator of Elections Dennis Stanley are members of the redistricting committee.According to 2010 census figures, the population of DeKalb County now stands at 18,723.To insure that the citizens of the county are equally represented, each district must have a population within 10 percent of 2,675, according to guidelines.The seven districts do not have to be exactly equal in population, as the requirements call for a benchmark of no more than a 10-percent deviation in the population of each district.Under the current plan DeKalb County's deviation range exceeds that number by seven percentage points at 17 percent.The 3rd district and the 7th district have the most residents. A total of 2,890 people live in the third, and the 7th district's population totals 2,881.The 3rd district must lose approximately 215 people to comply with regulations, while the 7th will decrease by 206 people.The 1st district has a population of 2,517, 158 more people than needed to meet the mark, and the 2nd district only has 2,428 residents, 247 less than the rules require. The 4th district has 2,482 residents, 193 less than the mean, while the 5th district's population is only slightly off the mark at 2,654, just 21 persons fewer than the 2,675 required.The population in the 6th district is at 2,871, 196 more than needed to comply.In order to make the required adjustments, the county must shift population from one district to another using census block boundaries.The commission must have the new redistricting plan in place by Jan. 1, 2012.

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