Today the usually obscure process of redistricting – drawing new maps for political districts after the Census – drew headlines because the commission working on legislative and congressional maps missed their deadline. But a separate group is still at work on another new map of note – redrawing King County Council districts. Their deadline is next week, after 10 months of work, and they’re down to working out the differences between two draft maps. A West Seattleite who’s on the King County Districting Committee, Rob Saka, called our attention to the group’s work earlier this fall. We watched tonight’s meeting.
West Seattle is currently in County Council District 8 [map], which also includes Vashon and Maury Islands, White Center and much of unincorporated North Highline, much of Burien, and part of downtown/Capitol Hill. Both of the draft maps keep West Seattle and Vashon/Maury remaining in District 8, but the district diverges from there. On Draft Map D, District 8 stretches much further south; on Draft Map E, the boundaries are much further north on both ends of the district, which would endin White Center. Here’s a version showing the areas of disagreement countywide (look for the stripes):
Before the end of tonight’s 2-plus-hour meeting, the committee members resolved some of the differences, but they didn’t reach final agreement on District 8, only agreeing that the “small cities” in the Sea-Tac Airport area should be in the same district, whichever district that turns out to be. They’ll continue talking again tomorrow night, and you can watch the livestream – the link is here, along with the schedule of other meetings, including a final public hearing on November 30th. If you have comments in the meantime, you can email email@example.com.
P.S. The city of Seattle has a redistricting commission, too (with members including former mayor Greg Nickels of West Seattle), but it’s at a much earlier stage of the process.