The city’s redistricting plans are now in the hands of the City Council. In the next several weeks, the council will be discussing the redistricting plans, which see the most dramatic shift in the shrinking of Ward 2, in subcommittee. There will also be two public hearings on the proposed new map before the council takes a final vote.
The redistricting process takes place every 10 years when communities get the latest U.S. census data. The districts are redrawn to keep the population in each fairly even across the board.
“The redistricting process started in April, and we are finally in the homestretch,” Reuben Kantor, the city’s Chief Innovation Officer, told the Human Rights Commission last week.
Kantor noted that the new boundaries that will be presented to the City Council were somewhat constrained by the boundaries recently set by the state legislature setting new boundaries for the state representative districts.
“For the most part, I don’t think you’ll see a lot of big changes,” said Kantor. “The biggest shift is really in Ward 2, because Ward 2 outgrew the legal boundaries it could maintain. By law, all wards have to maintain a pretty consistent size between them; all the precincts have to be within five percent of the average of each other.”
Revere had the largest population growth of any city in Massachusetts, according to the 2020 census, with all wards gaining population. However, Kantor said Ward 6 is the ward which grew the slowest, and hence is the ward which is slightly larger on the redistricting map.
Both interactive and static maps showing the proposed redistricting are available online at revere.org/redrawingrevere.
“I think we incorporated a lot of feedback we got,” said Kantor. “We had nearly 150 people participate in our online poll and comments, which was really valuable.”
Given the demographic changes in Revere over the past decade, Kantor said, city officials believe the demographics within each ward are in line with the changes.
“Following public hearings, and, we hope, Council approval, the city would submit the approved map to the Local Election Districts Review Commission (LEDRC) for final approval,” stated Mayor Brian Arrigo in a letter to the City Council. “The new boundaries would not become valid until the regularly scheduled 2022 State Primary and General Election. The State Senate Special Election will not be impacted.”
Earlier in the process, newly elected Ward 3 City Councillor Anthony Cogliandro expressed some concern that his side of Newman Street could end up shifted to Ward 6. The odd side of Newman Street is in Ward 3 and the even side in Ward 6. Under the map being presented to the City Council, Cogliandro will remain in Ward 3.