Ulster County Redistribution Commission to Use Computer Program to Draw New Legislative Districts – Daily Freeman
KINGSTON, NY – Members of the Ulster County Commission on Redistribution got their first glimpse this week of the computer program they will use to create the county’s new legislative districts.
The software will allow committee members – and the public – to easily plot potential district boundaries which can then be reviewed by the entire commission charged with plotting the new district boundaries of the County Legislature.
Commission members hope to make the program accessible to the public by the end of the year.
The Ulster County Redistribution Commission is responsible for using data from the 2020 U.S. Census to redraw legislative districts to reflect population changes within the county.
According to Census Bureau data, new legislative districts will have an average of 7,815 residents, compared to 7,934 residents included in legislative districts after the 2011 census update.
The largest population displacements occurred in two districts in the southern part of the county. District 13, which includes part of the town of Shawangunk, has a new population of 6,638, or 15.06% less than needed. District 15, which includes part of Wawarsing, including the village of Ellenville, has a population of 6,589, a variation of 15.69% from the required 7,815.
Most of the displacement of the population in these districts is the result of a state decree requiring that from the 2020 census, inmates in state prisons be counted where they lived before incarceration, rather than where they are incarcerated. There are state prisons in Shawangunk and Wawarsing.
The commission must have a draft plan completed by May 20, and it must adopt a new redistribution plan by July 20, 2022. The new lines must be in place for the election of county lawmakers in November 2023. .