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Supervisors must redraw district boundaries

Dan McDonald
Staff Writer
4/23/2011

 

It is time to adjust the district boundaries of the five county supervisors.

At the April 12 Board of Supervisors meeting, Plumas County GIS Planner Becky Osborn outlined the redistricting process that must be completed by Sept. 30.

Redistricting is done every 10 years, one year after the federal census.

The 2010 census showed 20,007 residents in Plumas County, a drop from the 20,824 people counted in 2000.

The latest census also revealed a population shift to the southern part of the county.

By law, the five districts must contain as close to 20 percent of the county’s total population as possible. That would mean about 4,000 people per district, based on the 2010 census.

According to that census, Districts 1, 4 and 5 each have more than 21 percent of the population, with District 5 — which includes the population centers of East Quincy, Little Grass Valley and Graeagle — housing 4,457 people, or 22.28 percent.

By contrast, District 3, which includes Chester and most of the        Lake Almanor area, has a population of 3,226, or 16 percent.

Although the county planners can make recommendations, it is up to the supervisors to approve the final boundaries.

“We will give you three scenarios at the next (supervisors) meeting,” Osborn told the board. “And then you can give us suggestions about what you think and we can go from there.”

The planners urged the board to have the two public hearings by the end of May. Those meetings are required by law.

Osborn said one of the goals of the redistricting is to preserve the basic shapes of the existing districts and to make sure that the elected supervisors still live within their district.

Other factors must be considered for the districts, such as topography, geography, cohesiveness, contiguity, integrity, compactness and community interests.

If, for any reason, the redistricting plan is not adopted before Nov. 1, state law requires a commission of elected county officials to redraw the district lines before Dec. 30.

 


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