Commissioners, School Board Review Redistricting Options
Members of the Moore County Board of Education joined the county commissioners Thursday for a close-up look at redistricting options.
With help from GIS Director Chris Koltyk, Elections Director Glenda Clendenin and members of the League of Women Voters, the two boards studied five proposed redistricting options and considered a sixth theoretical option.
“We try to stay away from any political decisions,” said Koltyk to explain differences in some of the proposed boundary lines.
GIS – geographic information system – is the program that develops computer-generated mapping and related graphic design.
Members of both boards had a number of questions, and Koltyk was asked to make the maps available on the county website.
Board of Commissioners Chairman Nick Picerno pointed out that it was a work session and an early look at redistricting options. In keeping with county policy, the commissioners do not normally take action during work sessions.
“Tonight is just the starting point. It’s just a beginning,” Picerno said.
At least two of the five districts making up the commissioners’ residential limits are seriously out of balance with the ideal size of 17,649 residents. That average is based on the 2010 census which places the county’s population at 88,247.
The school board has eight members, five of whom must reside in geographic districts. The other three are elected at large.
Commissioner districts apply to the candidates’ place of residence. The countywide electorate votes on candidates from all five districts. The problem with the present districts lies primarily in the disparity of population in districts in which Commissioners Picerno, Craig Kennedy and Jimmy Melton live.
Problems also arise with school board districts, especially when it comes to split school attendance districts. One issue is a likely requirement of legislative action to correct some district problems. State Rep. Jamie Boles said local legislation cannot be introduced and voted on until the General Assembly convenes next May for its “short’ budget session.
The meeting opened with an introduction of the districting concept by Jo Nicholas, president of the Moore County League of Women Voters and also the North Carolina league.
More details about the redistricting meeting will appear in the Sunday edition of The Pilot.
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