As the Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission (ICRC) waits for the 2020 Census data to redraw the boundaries for the 10 city council districts their aim this week is to focus on districts 8 and 4 by listening to public testimony from Austinites.
The volunteer board of 14 commissioners invite members of the public to an in-person public meeting about Austin's District 8. At this forum, they will hear from the ICRC and the work being done on the new City Council district maps. The public will have an opportunity to provide public comment and feedback on the city's current district map. The forum will take place at 6-8 p.m., Tuesday, July 27 at Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, 4801 La Crosse Ave., Austin, TX 78739.
They want to learn about the unique characteristics of communities of interest from those most familiar with their neighborhoods to help them determine the areas that should remain intact and/or be grouped together.
The goal is to have a new district map approved in November.
On Saturday, July 31 from 2-4 p.m. commissioners will host another public comment forum focusing on District 4 at the Gus Garcia Recreation Center, 1201 E. Rundberg Lane, Austin, TX 78753.
These volunteers are committed to drawing up a fair, impartial and inclusive city district map not just because they are civic minded but they are members of the districts themselves. For instance Commissioner Joshua Blank from District 8 will be on hand to listen to his neighbors talk about their boundary concerns. Blank brings extensive polling expertise to the commission.
Commissioner Sterling Lands from District 4, a senior pastor of Greater Calvary Bible Church, is a civil rights and community activist, youth advocate, and author. He participated in the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s and has been fighting for minority representation in Austin since the 1980s.
Along with census data, publicly submitted comments will be used to assist the commission when it begins drawing district boundaries between March 2021 through November 2021. The focus of public testimony is to receive information about the unique characteristics of communities of interest from those most familiar with their neighborhoods to help the commission determine areas that should remain intact and/or be grouped together in districts.
Public input forums will be recorded and videos of the meetings will be available after the meetings here: http://www.austintexas.gov/page/watch-atxn-live. Past meetings and agendas can be viewed on the commission's website at www.austintexas.gov/cityclerk/boards_commissions/meetings/116_1.htm
Interpretation or translation services will be available free of charge by advance request in Spanish, Chinese or Vietnamese. Call 311 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to request these services 48 hours in advance of a forum.
To find City Council Districts in Austin visit this link and type in an address: https://www.austintexas.gov/GIS/CouncilDistrictMap/
A list of upcoming ICRC public forums:
Tuesday, July 27, 2021, 6-8 p.m., District 8 at Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, 4801 La Crosse Ave., Austin, TX 78739.
Saturday, July 31, 2021, 2-4 p.m., District 4 at Gus Garcia Recreation Center, 1201 E. Rundberg Lane, Austin, TX 78753.
Tuesday, August 3, 2021, 6-8 p.m., District 6 location pending.
Saturday, Aug. 7, 2021, 1-3 p.m., District 3 location pending.
Tuesday, Aug. 10, 2021, 6-8 p.m., District 2 location at Mendez Middle School, 5106 Village Square Dr., Austin, TX 78744.
Saturday, Aug. 14, 2021, 1-3 p.m., District 1 at George Washington Carver Museum and Cultural Center, 1165 Angelina St., Austin, TX 78702.
Tuesday, Aug. 17, 2021, 6-8 p.m., District 5 location pending.
August TBA Virtual Public Forum
Commissioners are: Joshua Blank (District 8), Sara Inés Calderón (D2), Erin Dempsey (D10), Camellia Falcon (D7), Luis Gonzalez (D10, Vice-Chair), Errol Hardin (D1), Shaina Kambo (D9), Prabhu Kannan (D5), Dr. Sterling Lands (D4), Hoang Le (D8), Brigham Morris (D3), Christina Puentes (D7, Chair), Eugene Schneider (D6) and Selina Yee (D1).
The ICRC board will hold its weekly commission meeting via videoconferencing 6 p.m., Wednesday, July 21, 2021.
To join the meeting visit: https://zoom.us/j/92300250133?pwd=Mkg1NXd5WG9QZGVCOUU5Vlc0M0Jpdz09
Login with these credentials: Meeting ID: 923 0025 0133 Passcode: 67uSPc