Not Sure if Mayor Has New Redistricting Map. We Do Know When Council Will Discuss 'Em.
Wonder if Mayor Mike will keep Dwaine Caraway and Vonciel Jones Hill in the same district ...
Photo by Mark Graham
Thanks to Anna's unswerving dedication to documenting the entirety of the redistricting process, I've become addicted to the proposed maps that may or may not decide council districts for the next decade. So too has Mayor Mike, who may turn in his own amended map tomorrow by 5, the deadline for council members to do so. Stay tuned.
But this is a definite: We've learned that the city council will indeed meet on September 24, a Saturday, from 3 to 6 p.m. in council chambers to discuss the maps -- those on file and those that may show up tomorrow evening. Anna suggests bringing a flask.
Paula Blackmon, the mayor's chief of staff, says the new map to which the mayor referred yesterday wouldn't be a wholesale do-over; there's simply not enough time for Rawlings, or his staff, to start from scratch. Blackmon does suggest, though, that if Rawlings were to submit a map by 5 tomorrow, it would more than likely be an amended version culled from at least one of the three finalists presented to the public at the City Hall hearing on August 20.
"We are investigating all options," Blackmon tells Unfair Park this afternoon. "A whole new map from scratch is not viable. We understand that. We're looking at the current proposals, looking at all the options. We are not starting from square one. The three finalists are the starting point of coming up with the changes."
We should know before 5 tomorrow if Rawlings will indeed turn in his homework. And while Blackmon won't commit, it sure sounds like he's hoping to propose a proposal. "I would think the public would want a mayor who said, 'Is this the best we can do?'" Blackmon tells us. "I think that's what he was elected to do."
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you'll never miss Observer's biggest stories.