Rejected Redistricting Splits Greenwich Village and Inches Backwards on Voting Inequality
In a surprise move, the NYC Redistricting Commission met last Thursday to review revised proposed maps for new City Council district lines, and rejected the new plan 8-7. While this means these revised maps will not go to the City Council for approval or changes, and new maps must now be drawn up, the rejected plan does offer insights into the direction the Commission is moving in. And the signs are not good in some key respects.
The proposed (but rejected) new maps would worsen the inequality in population between our districts and the rest of the city, once again making our districts some of the most overpopulated and most underrepresented with the least voting power in the city. While the levels of inequality for our residents and neighborhoods are still much lower than they are now (20–30%) and were in last redistricting (10%), they are nevertheless higher than they need to be, and more than in the previously proposed July maps (see also here) — less than 1%
In a surprise move, the proposed (but rejected) maps also split Greenwich Village down the middle at Sixth Avenue, dividing it between two districts (the 3rd, currently represented by Erik Bottcher, to the west, and the 2nd, currently represented by Carlina Rivera, to the east). The July maps kept all of Greenwich Village west of Fifth Avenue in a single district.
While these changes were not adopted, the more favorable July maps are also unlikely to ultimately be adopted, and the Commission will now consider further revisions in a very tight time frame (the Commission and City Council must adopt a final map by early December). We have written to the Redistricting Commission urging them not to split Greenwich Village as proposed, and not to increase district population inequality as compared to the July maps, giving residents of our neighborhoods less voting power and representation. For more information and background on redistricting, see here.
IT’S CRITICAL THAT CITY OFFICIALS AND THE REDISTRICTING COMMISSION HERE FROM YOU NOW, BEFORE LINES ARE LOCKED IN FOR THE NEXT 10 YEARS.