City of Lawton works to redistrict ward boundaries

Published: Dec. 1, 2021 at 6:15 PM CST
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LAWTON, Okla. (KSWO) - Changes are coming soon for the City of Lawton’s ward boundaries.

At a meeting Wednesday afternoon, the Redistricting Commission looked at four maps of proposed boundaries, and debated which to adopt.

Director of Community Services and City Planning Janet Smith discussed the decision.

The 2020 Census showed Lawton wards 1, 3 and 5 lost the most population.

That means some wards must be re-adjusted to make the population in each ward equal again.

“We’ve tried to minimize impact to the ward changes, so we’ve been able to keep our proposals are trying to keep 80 to 85 percent of the population not moving into another voting district,” Smith said.

For commission members, the most important things to keep in mind when selecting a new map are not splitting precincts and acknowledging natural borders like rivers or roads.

“We try not to break that and keep them consistent with the voting wards that they’re used to being in,” Smith said. “Obviously, we don’t get political in this. We don’t really look at the politics of this. We have to look at the population.”

In particular, the commission noted option 2 appealed to the group more than the others because it moved the fewest number of residents to a different ward.

“Ultimately, it will be their decision for which way they’d like to adopt,” Smith said. “But it’s our job to do the work and to provide them with the information they need so that they can make an informed decision.”

The next meeting is next Wednesday, Dec. 8 and the commission will set a date for a public hearing on the proposed boundaries.

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