FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 30, 2022
Redistricting Public Hearing to Be Held on January 12, 2023
Three Redrawn Ward Map Alternatives Available for Public Comment
KINGSTON, NY – the Common Council’s Redistricting Subcommittee will host a Public Hearing regarding the proposed redistricting maps on Thursday, January 12, 2023 at 6:00pm. The Public Hearing will be held in-person at City Hall in Council Chambers and virtually via Zoom.
The City of Kingston, like other municipalities, must redraw its current ward maps to align with 2020 Census data on local population changes. Under the City’s Charter, the Common Council must undertake this redistricting process to make the nine wards more equitable. The Common Council’s Redistricting Sub-Committee has been tasked with overseeing the ward map redrawing for the City of Kingston, and has been working with a consultant who has created three proposed redistricting plans.
The three draft redistricting plans and a Deviation and Demographics Report for each plan are available at Engage Kingston or in person at the City Clerk’s Office at City Hall. Plan A represents the alternative with the least change and makes the fewest possible adjustments to the existing wards while still bringing the City of Kingston into compliance with State and Federal laws. Plan B is an example of a potential alternative that makes more significant changes using the same legal guidelines. Plan C would create new wards based on census data and the City’s communities with less focus on keeping the current ward boundaries.
The Redistricting Sub-Committee will meet on Tuesday, January 3 at 6:30pm at City Hall in Conference Room #1 and will then hear public feedback at the Public Hearing on January 12.
Redistricting Public Hearing
January 12, 2023
Council Chambers at City Hall or
Via Zoom (Click here. Passcode: 4EJdWd5d)
Live Spanish interpretation will be available
Written comment can also be sent to [email protected] or to the City Clerk’s Office at 420 Broadway, Kingston NY 12401 until Thursday, January 12, 2023 at 1:00pm.
The first Public Hearing was held in-person on December 13, 2022. The Redistricting Sub-committee met with the consultants/mapper on Tuesday, December 27 and can be viewed here. The Redistricting Sub-Committee also held an informational meeting on November 17. The recording can be viewed here.
The Common Council is expected to vote on the final maps before January 27, 2023.
Federal and state laws, including the Voting Rights Act and the new John R. Lewis Voting Rights Act of New York, guide the redistricting process and require the Common Council to avoid creating districts that deny or abridge minority voting rights. Applicable statutes also impose requirements on how the Common Council configures ward boundaries and requires new maps to protect “communities of interest.” The City’s new maps may not be drawn to discourage political competition or for the purpose of favoring (or disfavoring) particular candidates or political parties.
More information at www.engagekingston.com/redistricting.