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Councilman Dudley proposes amendment to ward reapportionment trial

Tuesday, October 4, 2011 | 6:54 p.m. CDT; updated 10:38 a.m. CDT, Wednesday, October 5, 2011

COLUMBIA – Fourth Ward Councilman Daryl Dudley has come up with another idea for how the city should redraw ward boundaries in the wake of the 2010 census.

At Monday night's City Council meeting, Dudley introduced an amendment to a boundary proposal known as Trial D. Dudley stated at the meeting that this amendment was made "to bring it within the legal constraints of contiguity."

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Population for each ward in proposed plans

Trial D:

First Ward: 18,634

Second Ward: 18,403

Third Ward: 17,723

Fourth Ward: 17,701

Fifth Ward: 17,591

Sixth Ward: 18,448

Trial D Amended:

First Ward: 18,630

Second Ward: 17,791

Third Ward: 17,723

Fourth Ward: 17,703

Fifth Ward: 18,205

Sixth Ward: 18,448


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Dudley would accomplish that by leaving the Thornbrook neighborhood in the Fifth Ward, adding a small part of the southwestern Second Ward to the Fourth and moving less of the Old Southwest from the Fourth to the First Ward.

The Missourian previously reported that Trial D was illegal because the wards were not contiguous. Trial D would have placed Thornbrook in the Fourth Ward even though it wouldn't be adjacent to any other part of the ward.

Some residents, however, are unhappy that Dudley's amended Trial D still places the Benton-Stephens neighborhood and part of the Old Southwest in the First Ward.

"I think it's a pretty blatant political move," Hank Ottinger, chairman of the Historic Old Southwest Neighborhood Association, said.

Ottinger, who had not yet seen Dudley's amendment to Trial D, added that voting precincts that Trial D would move into the First Ward from the Fourth are those Dudley lost in the 2010 City Council election. Precincts that would move from the Third Ward into the First under Trial D were among those lost by Third Ward Councilman Gary Kespohl the same year.

Ottinger said the Historic Old Southwest Neighborhood Association and the Westmount Neighborhood Association do not support Trial D.

This amendment changes the population of each ward slightly from Trial D, but both versions come close to the target populations.

Dudley will host a public meeting at 4 p.m. Friday in Conference Room B at Columbia Public Library.

The council is scheduled to vote on new ward boundaries at its Oct. 17 meeting. Five proposals remain on the table: Trials A, B, D, E and Dudley’s amended Trial D. All five were introduced on first reading Monday night. The council intends to vote each of the trials up or down next time around.

The trials were developed by the city planning staff and the Ward Reapportionment Committee. At their last meeting, committee members voted on each of the trials. They split 4-4 on the original Trial D. Five members voted for Trial E, and three voted against it. All the other trials received negative votes.


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Comments

Mike Martin October 5, 2011 | 11:02 a.m.

I'm told this meeting has been moved to the Friends Room due to a big response.

Also, neighbors aren't the only people who consider Trial D gerrymandering.

STUNNING ADMISSION: Ward reapportionment plan deliberate gerrymandering, Trib publisher says
http://www.columbiaheartbeat.com/2011/10...

(Report Comment)
Anna Carlson October 5, 2011 | 12:33 p.m.

Mike, the meeting has been moved to the Friends Room at the Columbia Public Library.

The meeting will also now take place from 3:30 p.m. to 5:50 p.m.

Anna Carlson, Missourian reporter

(Report Comment)
Karen Miller October 5, 2011 | 3:03 p.m.

Just to clarify, the meeting room is booked for 3:30 p.m. but the meeting should start at 4.

Karen Miller, Missourian Reporter

(Report Comment)
Ray Shapiro October 6, 2011 | 4:27 p.m.

It amazes me how readily council representatives are willing to hand over segments of their wards to the first ward, in light of the 2010 census.
Can someone direct me to the federal census website which identifies the body count per ward in Columbia?
I would think that given the newer housing apartment complexes downtown, an increase in student residences in the first ward and uncounted individuals in first ward section 8 rentals and other tenant lease violations there's probably more people living in the first ward than what's being reported by the articles I'm reading.
Did the committee and council consider checking with the colleges to determine if every college student was properly counted for as first ward residents?
Sans an analysis of projected population growth in the first ward, how are non-first ward council reps fully protecting their boundary lines?

(Report Comment)
Paul Allaire October 6, 2011 | 6:35 p.m.

With a FLAGPOLE. A flagpole, yes.

(Report Comment)

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