A redistricting of Mission’s ward boundaries that ran into trouble in both 2012 and 2013, appears to have little resistance on the city council in the 2015 attempt to make changes.
The big difference between the past suggestions and the current redistricting map is that the former Countryside municipality does not change wards. It was that provision that created considerable opposition to the original proposed re-alignment. The previous proposal also included future population estimates from apartment projects at both the east and west ends of the city in determining the population base for the individual wards.
The council tabled an original proposal for boundary changes in December 2012 to send it back to the redistricting committee for review. Another proposal emerged that was identical to the first and was tabled again in November 2013. That made re-alignment impossible to achieve in time for the 2014 elections.
The new proposal, from a new redistricting committee, met no opposition in a council committee meeting this week. The new proposal includes the new residents expected from Welstone at Mission Crossing apartments (110) which are well into construction and it adds residents from Mission Square (60). Since the residential component of the east Gateway development has been dropped from the developer’s latest proposal, that added population is no longer an issue. Two other potential developments, Brinshore (40) and Launch Development (287) are not under construction and the redistricting committee chose not to include them in population estimates.
The newest proposal shifts two small sections of the city from Ward 1 into Ward 2, moving 490 residents into Ward 2. The changes would not affect any current council residency and not require new appointments to boards or commissions. The redistricting effort is precipitated by a current imbalance in population among the wards. Currently, Ward 1 is more than 23 percent above the average and Ward 2 is 18 percent below the average ward population.
The proposed changes put both of those wards at less than three percent above average, Ward 3 at less than one percent below average and Ward 4 at just over four percent below average.
The proposal still needs to go through public hearings before its final approval.