Chesterton Tribune


Redrawn council district map to take effect January 1

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On Jan. 1, the Town of Chesterton will officially have five new districts—commonly called wards —into which the town is divided to ensure even representation on the council.

At its meeting Monday night, the Town Council voted 5-0 to approve on first reading an ordinance which codifies the re-drawn district map, 5-0 to suspend the rules, then 5-0 to approve the ordinance on final reading.

In fact, the new map is not that much different from the old. A block of District 5 south of East Porter Ave. and east of Ind. 49 has been re-assigned to District 1; a block of District 4 north of West Porter Ave. and east of 23rd Street has been re-assigned to District 3; and a block of District 4 west of 11th Street and north of 1100N has been re-assigned to District 2.

The new populations under the re-draw:

•District 1: 2,333. Includes the southeast quadrant of town and a good chunk of the Downtown south of Indian Boundary Road and on either side of North and South Calumet Road. Represented on the council by Member Jim Ton, Republican.

•District 2: 2,716. Includes neighborhoods south of West Porter Ave. and east of 11th Street all the way to 1100N. Represented by Member Jeff Trout, Republican.

•District 3: 2,641. Includes the neighborhood north of West Porter Ave. and south of Broadway. Represented by Nick Walding, Republican.

•District 4: 2,970. Includes Crocker and the newer subdivisions of Westwood Manor and Abercrombie Woods. Represented by Sharon Darnell, Democrat.

•District 5: 2,502. Includes the northeast quadrant of town. Represented by Emerson DeLaney, Republican.

Re-districting is required after every U.S. Census.

In fact, though, re-districting is more or less academic, since municipal voting in the Town of Chesterton is at-large, that is, all voters cast ballots in all district races, while each council members legally represents every resident of the town.

Still, under state law, a candidate for, say, the District 1 seat on the council must reside in District 1, while a candidate for the District 2 seat must reside in District 2. And so on.

Some years ago, Council Member Bob Crone resigned his seat after moving from a house in his council district to one in a different district.



Posted 12/11/2013