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2021 0722 REQUEST FOR LOCAL INPUT REGARDING REDISTRICTING

posted Aug 5, 2021, 9:52 PM by Douglas County Democrats

2021 is Redistricting time for us, and now is the time to make yourself familiar with the process and provide input.   Every 10 years, following completion of the decennial U.S. Census, the Washington State Redistricting Commission is formed.  Redistricting is the process of creating new districts or redrawing existing district boundaries to adjust for population changes that occurred in the last decade.


The number of people allocated to each district is based on the 2020 Census, which determined that the population of Washington state was 7,705,281 as of April 1, 2020. This figure represents a 14.6 percent growth in population over the last decade, but it does not change the number of Congressional representatives that the state is allocated. That number remains at 10.  Although final community census numbers will not be available until later this summer, each Congressional district in Washington state should represent approximately 770,528 people, while each of the 49 legislative districts should represent approximately 157,251 people.

 

It is important to take this opportunity to give input and find out how the Washington State Redistricting Commission is developing alternatives to the current configuration of Congressional Districts and Legislative Districts in Washington State.  There is one alternative out there so far that would move the 8th Congressional District further west and move East Wenatchee into the 4th.  If this is done, we may lose our sole blue representative: Kim Schrier. This would also necessitate that the Greater Wenatchee Area would need to work with two congressional district offices, rather than one, on any joint project requiring federal support.  The consequences would be similar if our communities are split between two legislative districts.


There are three ways for you to share your community feedback—by email, written testimony, or Zoom testimony before the Commissioners. 

  1. Tell the Commission about your community.  Send the Commission your comments and insights about your community and what makes it whole.  You can send your ideas by mail, email, phone, webform, or by submitting a video.  Communication through any of these methods will reach each Commissioner directly.

  2. Draw your community using the Commission’s mapping tool. Share your idea of how voting district boundaries should be drawn in your community or throughout the state. Use our DRAW YOUR WA mapping tool to easily draw the boundaries of your community and send it directly to the commission.

  3. Share your testimony with the Commission. Participate in a public forum in your outreach district. Find out where and when by finding your outreach district on the Commission’s map.  All forums will be held virtually, and participation is easy.  If you have trouble accessing the internet, the Commission has formed a partnership with Washington public libraries who will make available laptops and WIFI at their branches so you can sign up and participate.

If you are going to do Zoom testimony before the Commissioners, keep the following in mind:

 

  • You will only have 2 minutes to state your input to the commissioners.

  • Be brief.  Practice.  Time yourself.

  • Make your statement your own. 

  • Tell them Who you are, Where you live, and any relevant titles you hold.

  • Avoid describing your political party affiliation.

  • Concisely state what you do or don’t like about previous redistricting boundaries.  

    • (Example:  I do like that the City of East Wenatchee is in the same Congressional District as the City of Wenatchee.)

    • (Example:  I want to see Chelan County included in a West-River Congressional District because these communities have a stronger relationship with populations of the west-side, rather than of the east-side of the state.)

  • Tell the Commissioners what you would want to see done in this 2021 Redistricting effort. 

    • (Example:  I would like to see the Colville Nation included within one Congressional District and Legislative District.)

  • Remember you sign up to give a 2-minute talk on your points, so it’s a good idea to keep it within that time frame.  They won’t let you go over two minutes (the microphone will be turned off), so it is a good idea to also submit written comments via email.  



In lieu of personally testifying before the Commission, you can also submit written comments or draw your own CD and LD alternatives.  Each CD or LD must contain the correct population totals.


If you want to “speak out” your best opportunity is at the Redistricting Commission Outreach Meetings.  There will be two Outreach Meetings for each Congressional District.  The second outreach meeting for CD 4 (Newhouse) will be held Saturday, July 24th from 1-3 p.m.  The second outreach meeting for CD 8 (Schrier) will be held on Saturday, July 31st from 1-3 p.m.  Register for Public Comment


If you are interested in testifying, here are some sample testimonies to check out:

Sample Testimonies CD4: Click Here to View CD4 Videos

Sample Testimonies CD6: Click Here to View CD 6 Videos


This is an important opportunity to be heard. Although the personal Zoom testimony opportunities are limited in number and time, community members may submit written statements and draw maps until mid-October or later. The Redistricting Commissions will produce its final recommendations by mid-November. These will be presented to the 2022 Washington State Legislature for adoption or modification and become law for next year's elections. Now is the time for your input.


Some more information:

Washington State Redistricting Process:  www.redistricting.wa.gov

League of Women Voters’ alternative CD and LD suggested maps.  Zoom into both and see if it is affecting your area.  This is important to look at and see if it is affecting you in any negative way and call it out.

LWVWA Maps and Links: https://lwvwa.org/maps/

LWVWA Links to LD suggestion: Map

LWVWA Links to CD suggestion: Map1 Map2

 

Please keep in mind that these are just alternatives submitted by the LWVWA.  Any individual or group may provide input.  All input will be considered by the Redistricting Commission.


Following are some generic talking points we are promoting, but you will want to make your testimony your own.

 

  • Chelan County, the City of East Wenatchee, and the greater East Wenatchee Metropolitan Area (including Orondo, Baker Flats, Fancher, and Rock Island) would fit best with a western WA Congressional District as our issues, visitors, transportation needs, markets, and media markets are primarily western WA based.

  • After what happened in 2011, the commission must prioritize keeping Native lands and populations together.  

  • The commission should do outreach to each Tribe.  

  • Communities of interest should stay together geographically within CD and LD.  

  • Joe Fain should step down and be investigated for his past behavior.  

  • How will the Commission get mapping data to real people in ways they can understand?

  • How can the Commission make certain minority populations get at least a chance at a voice in districts in Central and Eastern Washington?  

  • Gerrymandering comes when you try to just modify existing maps - will you draw maps that start “from zero” as the maps should be, not how they “have been”?  

  • The Commission should not protect incumbents but should protect diverse populations and their right to representation.  

 

If you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to call (509-436-8899) or email.


Karen Keleman, Chair, Douglas County Democrats (509-630-3055)

Bill Miller, Chair, Democrats of Chelan County (425-444-9598)

 

NCWDems@gmail.com – HQ Office, 768 S Mission, Wen (509-436-8899/leave a msg) HQ Office Hrs: MWF 10-2

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