Brief redistricting hearing held in Demopolis – West Alabama Watchman

Members of the Alabama Legislature’s Redistricting Committees are making their way virtually throughout the state to give citizens the opportunity to speak out about how the state will be divided after the 2020 census.

Thanks to Demopolis City Councilman Charles Jones Jr., a few residents of the city learned of the virtual conference the day before it occurred. Jones set up an interactive television site in the Demopolis Civic Center on Wednesday at 1 p.m. Six people, include three from the press, Mayor Woody Collins and Councilman Bill Meador, attended.

Conducting the brief meeting was Sen. Jim McClendon, R-Springville, chairman of the Senate Redistricting Committee, who introduced Rep. Chris Pringle, House chair. Also sitting in on the session was one of Marengo County’s senators, Bobby Singleton, who serves on the Senate committee.

The legislators explained how the redistricting would proceed. They invited comments but answered no questions. The session lasted about 15 minutes.

Session also will be held at 9 a.m. Sept. 15 at Coastal Community College in Thomasville and at 11 a.m. Sept. 16 on the UWA campus. Anyone may join the debriefings by visiting,
https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZYvcOCrpz8jGdHDz0OqNwB6kP59z9hT2qEA.
The deadline to submit testimony is Sept. 16. Testimonies may be emailed to <district@alsenate.gov> or
<donna.overton@alsenate.gov>.

In the handouts given to those attending the meeting, maps showed the population gains and losses in each of Alabama’s 67 counties since the 2010 census. The maps were divided into the senate and house districts, the state Board of Education districts and the U.S. Congressional districts. Most counties in the state lost residents; 25 showed gains, particularly around major Alabama cities.

Marengo’s population has declined 8.10 percent, or 1,704 residents. Its eight contiguous counties also showed sharp declines. Perry County leads the state with a 19.64 percent drop, or 2,080 residents. Greene County is not far behind. It reported a loss of 14.54 percent, or 1,315 residents.

Marengo County shares two senatorial districts – 23 and 24 – with other counties, and its three House districts – 68, 71 and 72 – stretch from Tuscaloosa through Washington County.

On the federal level, three of Alabama’s seven Congressional districts gained population. The 7th District, of which Marengo is part, lost the most residents at 7.4 percent. District 5 which includes Huntsville gained the most at 6.04 percent.

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