Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Public Meetings Tonight and September 12 re Albany Reapportionment

Tonight, Aug. 28 at 5:30pm at the Albany Public Library main branch on Washington Avenue, the City of Albany Reapportionment Commission (chaired by Vicente Alfonso) will be holding its first public forum to receive input on reapportionment related issues.

Here is a link to the Commission's webpage, which also includes the Commission's workplan timetable and other data elements.

There will be an additional public forum on September 12 for the commission to receive input.

Here is a link to the article in today's Times Union about the redistricting commission.

Below is some information from the redistricting website that describes the work and purpose of the Commission. The Commission consists of eight volunteer Albany residents who were appointed by the Albany Common Council. Unlike the last reapportionment commission, there are no Common Council Members who serve on the current commission.

City Wards & Redistricting


In accordance with the City Charter, the City of Albany is divided into 15 legislative districts, or Wards. Each Ward is represented by a City Common Council Member who is elected by their constituency to serve a four year term. Each Common Council Member functions to regulate and protect the interests of residents within their Ward.

Collectively the members comprise the Common Council which serves as the legislative branch of Albany’s government. The Common Council is authorized to adopt, amend or repeal local laws, ordinances, resolutions and regulations pertaining to property and government affairs within the City.

Ward boundaries are established by the Common Council to best represent the demographics within the City and are based primarily on Census information.


Redistricting refers to the process by which census data is used to redraw the boundaries of electoral districts, or in the case of the City of Albany, Ward boundaries. Redistricting impacts the weight of your vote and involves making difficult decisions constricted by complicated local, State and Federal laws. In the City of Albany, this process is conducted every 10 years, and is based on the latest Federal Decennial Census information. The City's Ward boundaries were last finalized in 2003 based on Census 2000 data, and are currently undergoing review per the 2010 Census. Redistricting represents one of the most important undertakings of our democracy.


The Reapportionment Commission is appointed by the Common Council to review Ward boundaries within the City of Albany. In order to accommodate population changes and demographic shifts reported in current Census surveys, the Commission strives to maximize the legal principle of "one person, one vote," consistent with the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and subsequent case laws.

The Commission also has a responsibility to maximize public participation in the process of redistricting in the City of Albany, and to ensure the Ward maps best represent protected groups and community of interests within the City. The Commission obtains public input on representation and boundary adjustments through public meetings, hearings and other community outreach. A finalized plan will be presented to the Common Council for their review and approval.

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