St. Pete redistricting process advances
St. Pete redistricting process advances – the Citizens Redistricting Commission meets today
St. Petersburg, FL (August 4, 2022) — St. Petersburg City Council officially adopted a resolution acknowledging submission of the redistricting report and appointments to the Citizens Redistricting Commission to establish districts under new population data resulting from the 2020 United States Census.
Mayor Ken Welch appointed local realtor Tahisia Scantling, who was selected after an open and transparent process utilizing an online portal for applicant submissions.
Each City Council member of the eight-member board also made appointments. Those include:
District 1 Council member Copley Gerdes: Kim Vogel
District 2 Council member Brandi Gabbard: Darla Otey
District 3 Council member Ed Montanari: Melissa Meshil
District 4 Council member Lisett Hanewicz: Joel Giles
District 5 Council member Deborah Figgs-Sanders: Shameka Jones
District 6 Council member Gina Driscoll: Trevor Mallory
District 7 Council member Lisa Wheeler-Bowman: Rev. J.C. Pritchett, II
District 8 Council member Richie Floyd: James Kidder
Every 10 years, following results of the decennial U.S. Census, the City Charter requires new consideration of City Council district boundaries. The goal is to establish Council districts that are equal in size. Population changes over 10 years often result in shifting demographics that require district adjustments.
The City Charter establishes the redistricting process in section 5.06 and requires a Mayor’s report, establishment of the Citizens Redistricting Commission and adoption of new districts by City Council following the redistricting commission’s report.
The Citizens Redistricting Commission, comprised of nine citizens, has 60 days following its initial meeting to submit a report to City Council either confirming existing districts or proposing new districts.
Once their report is received by City Council, control of the redistricting process shifts to City Council, which may either accept the districts proposed in the redistricting commission report by majority vote or reject proposed districts by adopting districts drawn by City Council through unanimous vote.
Should City Council fail to take either action, the districts proposed in the redistricting commission report will be adopted and go into effect without City Council action.
The redistricting commission is tasked with drawing new maps to comply with requirements of the U.S. Constitution, the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the Florida Constitution, Florida law and City Charter.
The Citizens Redistricting Commission meets first for an organizational session today (August 8, 2022) at 5pm in City Council chambers.
More information on the redistricting process here: https://www.stpete.org/government/initiatives___programs/redistricting.php
More information on the Citizens Redistricting Commission here: https://www.stpete.org/government/boards___committees/redistricting_commission.php