1. What is Districting?
Beginning in 2023, Meridian is required to elect our City Council members by district as we surpassed 100,000 people in the last census. Districts must be drawn so that each district is substantially equal in population. This process, called districting, is important in ensuring that each City Council Member represents about the same number of constituents. Although Meridian’s districting process must be completed by August 2023, Mayor Simison’s goal is to have Meridian’s District Map complete by August 2022, to provide potential candidates and voters additional time to plan accordingly. The City of Meridian will engage communities in the districting process by holding public hearings and doing public outreach.
2. Why is this important?
Districting determines which neighborhoods and communities are grouped together for purposes of electing a City Council member. An independent committee was formed in April 2022 to review census data and other factors to create a proposed map of the six City Council districts. You are invited to provide feedback on the proposed map by attending public hearings and/or providing input in the form of written comments. Meridian’s overall population has increased to 117,635 as of the 2020 decennial census. Given the city’s new population count, the ideal average population per City Council district is 19,606.
3. What criteria will be used when drawing district lines?
Each district shall, to the nearest extent possible, contain the same number of people based on the most recent federal decennial census. In addition, district lines will be adopted using the following criteria:
1. The number of districts shall correspond to the number of City Council seats.2. Districts shall consist of one or more contiguous election precincts.3. The districting map shall not “split” election precincts.4. The districting map shall adhere to the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.5. The districting map shall adhere to the provisions set forth in Idaho Code section 50-707A. Besides the above criteria, districts shall not be drawn for purposes of favoring or discriminating against an individual or a political party.
4. How Can I Get Involved?
Meridian Districting Committee held two Public Hearings to educate residents on the districting process and presented their proposed Districting Map » that details boundaries and how they impact local elections. The Meridian Districting Committee approved the proposed Districting Map and City Council will now hold a Public Hearing on the resolution at Meridian City Hall City Council Chambers on Tuesday, June 28 at 6:00 p.m. Residents are invited to provide feedback on the Meridian Districting Map. Current public meeting information and schedules can be located here ». Past Meridian District Committee Agendas and Minutes, as well as links to the YouTube recordings of the meetings, can be found here ».
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