PARKERSBURG - The West Virginia Senate's redistricting committee will meet from 7 p.m.-8:30 p.m. Wednesday in Parkersburg City Council chambers.
The committee has been meeting across the state in the development of a plan to redraw the boundaries of the House of Delegates and Senate and the U.S. House of Representatives and the Parkersburg meeting is the 10th of 12 meetings. Sen. Donna Boley, R-Pleasants, is a member of the committee.
The redistricting is required after a census and the 2010 census indicates a population shift toward the Eastern Panhandle. The population loss is greater in the southern counties including Kanawha County.
In the meantime, the House of Delegates committee on redistricting will meet noon today in its chambers in the Capitol.
The meeting was planned to coincide with the Legislature's monthly interim session so that all members could attend, committee Vice Chairman Mike Caputo said
"As we've said before, we envision this as a process that takes place and the local level and all House members are working to help ensure the wishes of each local community are considered," Caputo said. "We will also urge members to encourage constituents to use our new Website or call our committee phone line and provide input."
Delegates John Ellem and Dan Poling of Wood County, Bob Ashley of Roane County and Mitch Carmichael of Jackson County are members of the House redistricting committee. The Website to the House Redistricting Committee is at www.legis.state.wv.us.
"We want to provide citizens with as much information as possible about the process of redrawing the boundaries of the West Virginia delegate districts," Chairman Brent Boggs said. "The site provides ways to look up current individual delegate districts and contact those delegates, examine the U.S. Census figures, and view a breakdown of the regions each the delegates on the 30-member House Redistricting Committee cover."
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Rick Snuffer, R-Beckley, a freshmen legislator, issued a release about single-representative districts, asking the House leadership to answer if 36 of the 58 districts are single-representative, then why aren't the other 22. The 10th District in Wood County is a three-member district.
"If a Single Delegate District is good for the people of the 34th District which Majority Leader Boggs represents, why not for the people of the 32nd District which Minority Leader (Tim) Armstead represents? If single delegate districts are appropriate for the citizens of the Eastern Panhandle, why not for the good folks in the Northern Panhandle,." he said. "In Mercer County, the people who live in the 24th District have a single delegate representing them, but the Mercer County residents of the 25th Delegate District have two delegates representing them."