Rock County drafts changes to voting map
IF YOU GO
What: Regular meeting of the Rock County Board
When: 6 p.m. Thursday, April 28.
Where: Rock County Courthouse board room, 51 S. Main St., Janesville.
Details: Among other business, the board will host a public hearing on a draft map of new districts created after the 2010 census. A map of the existing districts is on the county’s website, www.co.rock.wi.us.
A draft version of the new map is expected to be posted on the website this week.
JANESVILLE The public is invited to speak Thursday on a preliminary proposal for new voting districts for the Rock County Board.
The board will host a public hearing to gather feedback on a proposed map that moves some of the voting lines throughout the county based on the results of the 2010 census.
Districts near Janesville’s downtown show little changes, according to the draft map.
Others around the city’s edges show considerable changes.
-- The map shows District 9, which currently stretches west of the city across Janesville and Center townships, now would shift east. Its western border would be the Rock River, and the district would stretch east of Interstate 90/39.
-- District 26, which includes much of the city’s west side, would stretch further north to connect with District 9.
-- On the southeast side of the city, District 29 would shrink in toward the city’s center, while the rural District 7, would expand to meet the change. The change to District 29 also would push District 28 south from its current location.
An ad hoc committee of the board in late March and throughout April met to design the preliminary changes. The board could approve the map at a regularly scheduled meeting Thursday, May 12.
The committee, which is made up of four county board members and five county residents, came up with a list of criteria for making the changes. The criteria include population changes, the preservation of core districts, balance of city and county representation and the possibility of future development, according to a memo to the Janesville City Council from Jean Ann Wulf, the city’s clerk-treasurer.
The city will get the map the week of May 16 and will have 60 days to create city wards within the proposed county districts. The city can propose minor changes to the county map, Wulf’s letter states.
The city council will be asked to approve an ordinance finalizing the changes, according to the memo.
Other municipalities in the county will go through similar processes, said Nick Osborne, assistant to the county administrator. The county then will adopt a final plan, Wulf’s memo states.
Setting boundaries for state legislative districts takes place at the same time but is separate from the county process, Osborne has said. A state committee of representatives and senators will create legislation for district changes just like any other bill, he said.