Maryland Citizens Redistricting Commission Holds Virtual Regional Meeting for Cecil, Harford, and Carroll County Residents on June 16
The Maryland Citizens Redistricting Commission, a nonpartisan commission created by Governor Larry Hogan to draw fair and representative legislative and congressional district maps for the 2022 elections, will hold a virtual public meeting on Wednesday, June 16, at 6 p.m. for residents of Cecil, Harford, and Carroll counties. Individuals from all other counties are welcome to join the meeting. For more information about how to provide testimony at the public meeting, either in advance or during the meeting, please click here. For a list of all upcoming virtual listening tour meetings, click here.
Senator Ready Emphasis at Meeting:
I will be signing up to address the commission Wednesday (more details below on how you can too). There are three (3) main points that I believe are crucial to emphasize for Carroll County as we approach this once-a-decade redistricting:
1. On Congressional Redistricting- we must keep communities together as much as possible. Carroll County currently is split between two congressional districts. The First District runs from Taneytown to Ocean City - it's primarily an Eastern Shore and Northeastern MD district. The Eighth District is worse. Over half of Carroll County is connected to the inner D.C. Beltway suburbs. Nearly 70% of the 8th District's population is in the area including Takoma Park, Silver Spring, Wheaton and Rockville. Not a lot of common interests or problems We should be restored to a congressional district that unites Carroll County - ideally with our fellow Western Maryland counties as was the case historically for decades.
2. State Legislative Redistricting (Senate) - Carroll County appears to have the right population for one full State Senate district, with enough left over for one more single member Delegate district that could be part of another Senate district predominantly in Howard or Frederick Counties. Right now there are parts of three Senate districts running into Carroll. My district, District 5, takes up most of the county's land mass which is good, but the Martin O'Malley gerrymander of 2012 put small pieces of the county into two separate Senate districts. It's nonsensical and it should be corrected this time.
3. State Legislative (House of Delegates should have Single Member Districts Statewide) - This might be the most important issue from the perspective of fair representation. Maryland currently has Delegate districts that are three "at large" in side a full Senate district - District 5 is this way with me as the Senator and our three Delegates - Krebs, Rose & Shoemaker. Other districts have an "A" and "B" with 2 Delegates and 1 Delegate respectively. Still other Senate Districts have an "A", "B" and "C" that are single member. This makes very little sense and it causes some people to get to vote for 3 Delegates, some for 2 and others for 1. We need to get it so that every Delegate district is an roughly equally populated district where each voter gets to vote for 1 Delegate - and then can know who they are and hold them accountable.
This is the first of three rounds of public meetings – the first round is a listening tour; the second round will occur later in 2021 after Census data is distributed to the states; and the third round will occur after the Commission drafts legislative and congressional maps.
WHO: Maryland Citizens Redistricting Commission and Residents of Cecil, Harford, and Carroll counties. **Reminder that anyone is welcome to join the meeting.**
WHAT: Virtual Meeting with Maryland Citizens Redistricting Commission
WHEN: Wednesday, June 16 at 6 p.m. until all speakers have provided testimony
HOW TO JOIN THE MEETING OR SUBMIT TESTIMONY IN ADVANCE OF OR DURING THE VIRTUAL MEETING: To register for the meeting or to sign up to give live testimony from your computer, tablet, or smartphone, click here. You can also dial in by calling (301) 715-8592 and entering the webinar ID 994 6627 0105. You can also submit your comments electronically or send a redistricting question to [email protected].
As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me anytime at [email protected]. My team and I will do our best to get back to you as quickly as possible.