Tuesday, January 10, 2012

School Board Agrees to District Voting

After a careful review of all of its options, the Board of Education has taken steps to resolve the litigation filed by the NAACP and local citizens. Under the existing local constitutional amendment, which has been in place since 1970, the board is responsible, after every census, for revising election districts from which board members are selected. The plan developed and unanimously approved by the board for the new districts has been agreed to by the plaintiffs in the lawsuit and provides for districts that are compact and follow existing voting precinct lines to the maximum extent possible while still meeting the requirements of the Constitution that each voter be equally represented.

The board has also agreed to ask the court to enter a consent order that will change the election of board members from an at-large process to one where the voters of each election district elect their own representative. In making this decision, the board realizes that there are valid and convincing policy arguments on both sides of this position and they have heard from constituents favoring both sides. But after considering those arguments, the advice of its legal counsel, and the cost of the litigation in this time of financial austerity facing the school district, the board is convinced that this is the right action for the school district and the community.

No comments: