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Archive for Tuesday, November 6, 2001

Minor districting changes sought

November 6, 2001

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Douglas County commissioners Monday rejected the one plan that would make large-scale changes to their district boundaries, instead focusing on redistricting plans that would make only minor adjustments.

At a study session Monday, commissioners quickly rejected a plan that would have taken all of western Douglas County from the 3rd District and put it into the 2nd, while moving Eudora and the surrounding area from the 2nd District into the 3rd.

County Commissioner Charles Jones had proposed the plan, in part, because it would ensure each district would have one of the county's three universities Kansas, Baker and Haskell Indian Nations.

But even Jones agreed the changes likely would create too much confusion and objection from voters used to a current configuration that has existed essentially unchanged for several decades.

Commissioners instead asked staff members to compile more information on three proposed maps that would keep the districts roughly within current boundaries.

Based on 2000 Census numbers, commissioners will need districts roughly 33,320 people in size to create three equal districts, which is constitutionally mandated.

The 3rd District is approximately 4,200 residents above that total, while the 2nd District is roughly 2,400 residents below the mark. The 1st District is about 1,800 residents short.

Commissioners are expected to discuss the issue again in about a month.

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