City Council Makes Neighborhoods Whole in Approval of Updated Redistricting Map

Lisa Gardner, City Council Communications Director, 509.625.6226

Tuesday, November 8, 2022 at 9:13 a.m.

During Monday night’s Legislative Session, Council Members voted 4-2 (Council Member Zappone abstaining) on Ordinance C36298, adopting an updated City Council District map based on 2020 census data that keeps neighborhoods together rather than splitting them between multiple districts. The redistricting process occurs every ten years after the City receives federal census data.

The approved map is one of four selected by the City’s volunteer Redistricting Board for robust public comment, including town hall meetings, online surveys, receipt of written and oral public comment, and discussions with the Community Assembly and Neighborhood Councils. 

“This updated map strengthens and keeps our neighborhoods together, ensuring that all neighborhoods are equally represented on Council and reducing confusion for neighborhoods that were previously split between districts,” said Council Member Betsy Wilkerson. “Listening to the people who live in those most impacted neighborhoods only reaffirmed that this map will serve our community best.”

The new map will make the East Central, Riverside, and West Hills neighborhoods, which were previously split between two Council Districts, whole, aligning with the Revised Code of Washington’s call to “preserve existing communities of related and mutual interest.” See RCW 29A.76.010(5)(e). The approved map is not the one that was originally recommended by the Redistricting Board and was amended by City Council on October 24, 2022.

In a written statement submitted to the Council, Spokane Redistricting Board Chair Rick Friedlander wrote, “The Redistricting Committee had the RESPONSIBILITY to make a recommendation, which was done at city Council meeting October 24. At that point our work was done. The City Council has the AUTHORITY to decide which if any of the options we put forward will be used in this round of redistricting. I trust them to complete this task.”

“I truly appreciate the work done by the Redistricting Board and I regret this process has taken such a political turn,” said Council Member Karen Stratton. “My support of the updated map is in response to those neighborhoods that do not want to be split.”

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