Dallas City Council failed again to agree on a newly redrawn map for the City of Dallas last week. The Dallas City Council will meet again on Monday, June 27, at 3:30 p.m. to finalize the new map.
The council spent multiple hours debating a few modifications to the Redistricting Commission’s approved map, which the commission first submitted and gave a detailed brief to council members on May 18.
Under U.S. Justice Department rules, the council only has 45 days to approve or reject a proposal after its submission.
That gives the city council a deadline of June 29 to take action on the proposal. If no action is taken, the Redistricting Commission’s original submission will default as the city’s new map.
The new map will first go into effect for the May 2023 council election and remain in effect for ten years until redistricting is required again to account for changes in population as recorded by the U.S. Census.
Changes in racial demographics and the overall size of the population are required to be considered when new district boundaries are drawn, according to federal law.
The initially submitted map by the Redistricting Commission sparked pushback from some residents, who claimed it was “racially divisive,” “politically motivated,” or did not “evenly distribute population” while keeping neighborhoods intact.
The Redistricting Commission designed the submission after reviewing more than 50 maps and hearing from over 1,200 community members.
Several residents supported the council-proposed amendments to the original map, particularly keeping the Parkdale neighborhood in District 7, an amendment proposed by District 7 Councilman Adam Bazaldua.
“We would really like the support of our other council members to back this and keep our neighborhood in District 7,” said Parkdale Drive resident Grant Galliford. “We did a neighborhood vote, and everyone wants to stay in seven, and they want to remain with Parkdale lake.”
District 4 Councilwoman Carolyn King Arnold proposed an amendment approved on Wednesday. It would “put Kiest Park and the community back together [in District 4] to enhance unity.”
Her amendment also moves the area from Hampton Road to Illinois Avenue to Rugged Drive to Kiest Boulevard from District 3 to District 4. It also changes the area enclosed by R.L. Thornton Freeway, Ledbetter Drive, Marsalis Avenue, and Laureland Road from District 4 to District 3.
An amendment proposed by District 2 Councilman Jesse Moreno and District 7 Councilman Adam Bazaldua would have kept Owenwood in District 2 and Casa View in District 9, but it fell one vote short of approval. The amendment needed 12 votes to pass but received only 11.
District 5 Councilman Jaime Resendez did not support the modification, saying it would reduce his district by 5,000 residents, creating the lowest population and voter turnout of all the city’s districts.