Butler County Times Gazette
  • County Commission looks at options for redistricting county

  • About a year ago, the Butler County Commission discussed the possibility of redistricting due to population shifts within the county.
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  • About a year ago, the Butler County Commission discussed the possibility of redistricting due to population shifts within the county.
    At that time, the commissioners decided to put the discussion on hold until after the November 2012 elections.
    During Tuesday's meeting, the commissioners resumed the conversation about redistricting.
    "We will discuss this, get a few ideas and hold a couple of public hearings," said county administrator Will Johnson. "Maybe this will happen this year, maybe it won't."
    One major factor in the redistricting discussion is the population of Andover, which has grown 38.9 percent over the past 10 years. The commissioners would like to keep an urban/rural balance in all of the districts, but that could be a challenge in District #1, of which Andover is a part.
    District #1, which is represented by Commissioner Jeff Masterson, has 16,618 residents; District #2, which is represented by Commissioner Peggy Palmer, has 13,176 residents; District #3, which is currently represented by Commissioner Bruce Harris but will be represented by Commissioner-elect Ed Myers beginning in January, has 12,755 residents; District #4, which is represented by Commissioner Mike Wheeler, has 11,728 residents; and District $5, which is represented by Commissioner Dan Woydziak, has 11,603 residents.
    The present districts were set up in 2003, when the Butler County Commission expanded from three members to five members.
    During future meetings, the commissioners will continue to discuss the best way to maintain balance for all five of the districts.
    In other business, the commissioners:
    • approved the contracts between Amerigroup and United Health and the Butler County Health Department.
    • approved a letter of support for Creative Community Living’s transportation program.
    • approved a letter of fund commitment for the Department on Aging transportation program.
    • approved the purchase of snow plow and motor grader blades for the Highway Department.
    • approved the purchase of sign-making equipment for the Department of Public Works-Highway Division.
    • approved a revised cost estimate for previously approved repairs to the burn damaged asphalt distributor.
    • held a public hearing regarding the proposed vacation of two miles of road right-ofway in Chelsea Township.
    • approved an order related to the proposed vacation of two miles of road right-of-way in Chelsea Township.
    • tabled a work session about Courthouse historic preservation.
    • held a work session to talk about issues that will be discussed at next week's Kansas Association of Counties meeting in Topeka.
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