Final Louisville Metro Redistricting Map Expected This Week

by Devin Katayama on October 10, 2011

The Louisville Metro Council’s ad hoc committee on redistricting is finished hearing public comments and final drafts of all 26 district maps are expected to be introduced to the Metro Council on Thursday.

Public comments taken during six regional redistricting meetings have led to some changes in some new district boundaries, said Councilman Rick Blackwell, D-12, who chairs the redistricting committee.

“There’s still some tweaking. They’re will be some differences between the 10-C (map) that we have right now and the 10-D that we’ll be filing but it really will be tweaks for the most part,” said Blackwell.

Those tweaks are just slight adjustments and no major changes to maps released to the public are expected, he said. Although when the final Legislative Review Committee (LRC) population numbers were finally received to Metro Government, some shifting was needed, Blackwell said.

Among some considerations was a neighborhood at the bottom of Riverpor. Residents made a good case for why they fit better with Valley Station, Blackwell said. The committee will also consider reconnecting neighborhoods that were split between districts of Councilwoman Vicki Welch, D-13, and Councilman James Peden, R-23, he said.

The LRC numbers also forced slight shifting between council members Brent Ackerson, D-26, Jim King, D-10 and Kevin Kramer, R-11.

The most anticipated regional meeting included Louisville’s western districts where lines and borders weave their way down city streets like a jigsaw puzzle.

Louisville is adding a sixth majority African-American district in its final version. But in a few districts the African-American percentage numbers dropped and this raises some concern among residents, said Louisville NAACP President Raoul Cunningham.

Cunningham, who has closely followed the redistricting process, said residents at the west regional meeting were mostly interested in the redistricting process itself and he expects only slight adjustments, if any, from any new maps. But that may be good because west Louisville’s African-American population has thinned, he said.

“And therefore you need to spread African-Americans more evenly across the six districts to create six minority-majority districts,” Cunningham said.

Cunningham has requested specific precinct numbers for his organization’s own review. He said the committee has handled the process well so far.

An ordinance is expected to be introduced for a first reading this week.

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