Important Announcement on
Changes Affecting the Work of the COR
The final map on redistricting the twenty-three Ulster County Legislative Districts presented to the Board of Elections on July 20, 2022 was declared illegal and void by State Supreme Court in Ulster County. The judge ordered the Commission on Reapportionment (COR) to reconvene and redraw a new map that comports with a new state law that includes tighter redistricting criteria passed on October 21, 2021. This law, which was enacted in the middle of the COR eighteen-month process, was unknown to the COR until September 2022.
The principal change in the new law affects the size of the districts which “shall be as nearly equal in population as is practicable; namely, the difference in population between the most and least populous district shall not exceed five percent of the mean population of all districts.” A rule of thumb is to keep each district within plus or minus two and a half percent. All previous mapping by the COR abided by an earlier law that stipulated the combined most and least populous districts not to exceed ten percent of the mean population of all districts. Therefore, all communications on the County’s COR webpage that referred to the allowable size of each district not to exceed plus or minus five percent of the mean population of all districts were incorrect.
The State Supreme Court in Ulster County Decision and Order, issued December 13, 2022, which caused the COR to reconvene and re-do a map within certain guidelines and timeframes can be found HERE.
“Drawing the Lines”
Welcome to the Ulster County NY Commission on Reapportionment
America is a representative democracy. Reapportionment is the reassigning of representation based on population shifts according to the U.S. Census. Redistricting is drawing the lines of the district based on Census data. The numbers of representatives may remain the same, but drawing the lines of the districts must follow rules, like equality of numbers per district and contiguity of boundaries (sharing an edge). Here, in Ulster County, the Commission on Reapportionment is responsible for re-districting.
Every ten years, in years ending in a “0”, the U.S Census counts all of the people living in our country. The Constitution of the U.S. directs that an enumeration takes place as a means of determining population shifts since the last census. The 2020 Census has been completed. The Reapportionment Commission will be seeking input first and foremost from the people of Ulster County on how to best to follow the rules and complete our task in the most reasonable way possible.