What's that? You want another redistricting item? Well, then, you are so in luck. Anna too, since she's got some place to be at 9 tomorrow morning.
The city has not yet sent to the Department of Justice the new map of council districts approved by the council -- just barely -- on October 5. Arlicia Herron, in the Redistricting Office, says it will be "going within the next two weeks," and that changes can't and won't be made to it between now and then. Which, as Anna noted last week, isn't stopping some Hispanic leaders from demanding the map be reworked yet again to make room for five Latino districts, given that 42 percent of the city's population is Hispanic. (Though, as civil rights attorney Mike Daniel recently insisted, "The growth of the Hispanic population is significantly noncitizens and noncitizens of voting age.")
Right now, the map appears to have four Latino districts -- though Domingo Garcia, the former council member turned redistricting commissioner, insists there are but two. Which brings us to this: Tomorrow at 9 a.m., representatives from the League of United Latin American Citizens
and the Latino Redistricting Task Force are scheduled to show up at Dallas City Hall for what's being billed as a "urgent Dallas redistricting meeting." From the invite we received:
Fellow LULACers and concerned citizens,
On 10/05/11 the city of Dallas adopted a map that clearly undermines and dilutes the Hispanic vote. This, by definition, is gerrymandering and it is unconstitutional.
As the League of United Latin Americans, we need to speak up on this issue and be the voice of our community. There are 50% more white-majority districts (6) than Hispanic-majority districts (4) in the new approved city council map. This is in a city where the Hispanic population is 47% larger than the white, non-Hispanic population.
The city of Dallas needs to understand that this is NOT okay and that the constituency of Dallas will not stand for it. Our Voice Counts, Our Vote Counts, and We Matter!
Please come to this meeting; it is essential that we show up in force. ... The Dallas City Council must reflect Dallas. That is the law!
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Mayor Mike Rawlings's chief of staff, Paula Blackmon, confirms there are several speakers signed up to address the council tomorrow about redistricting. "We welcome individuals who want to express their views in front of the city council," she says. "It's an open meeting, and we'd like to hear from them." Not gonna have much of a choice, sounds like.