Redistricting is the process of redrawing the boundaries of election districts to ensure that the people of each district are equally represented. This process is done throughout many levels of government, and happens every 10 years following the federal Census.
The County’s responsibilities in redistricting are limited to:
Once available, the County Auditor sends the newly drawn state legislative and congressional redistricting plans to the cities within Scott County. The cities will have 60 days to redraw or re-establish precinct boundaries and polling places.
The County Board establishes new commissioner districts once the cities have completed their redistricting duties. The Board has 20 days to complete this work once the cities have provided them their newly established plans.
The County Auditor will update voter registration records in the Statewide Voter Registration System to reflect the newly established districts and precinct boundaries. This will ensure that all voters are voting in their correct precinct. Voters will be notified of this change by a direct mailing, through social media and from local news media outreach.
At the April 19, 2022 County Board Meeting, the Scott County Board of Commissioners adopted the final Commissioner & Scott Soil and Water Conservation District boundaries as outlined in the map below:
In adopting the final plan, the board made the following findings:
- The plan is divided into as many districts as it has members;
- The plan’s districts are bounded by precinct lines;
- The plan is composed of contiguous territory as regular and compact in form as practicable and is as equal in population as possible;
- The plan is within the 10% variance of the average of all districts;
- The least populous districts contain the majority of the population of the county;
- The plan allows for rural representation in 2 districts;
- Public comment favors this plan;
- The plan stays closely with what the public has been used to for the last 10 years which helps the understanding of citizens;
- The plan is #1 in compactness of the 4 proposed plans;
- The plan is #2 in balanced population of the 4 proposed plans;
- A majority of the Latinx community along 169 is in one district; and
- The plan takes into consideration planned future population growth to maintain comparable population between all districts until the next census.
2022 Approved State Congressional, House, & Senate District Maps
Redistricting takes place in the following order:
County districts are last, after city and township precinct boundaries are drawn:
- State Legislature: Congressional and legislative districts
- City Councils: Wards and precincts
- Township Boards: Precincts, if split by congressional or legislative boundaries
- County Board: Commissioner Districts and Soil and Water Conservation Districts
February 1, 2022 – Precinct Caucus
February 15, 2022 – Federal and state lines available (congressional and legislative districts)
March 29, 2022 – City and Township deadline to complete wards and precincts
April 11 and 13, 2022 – Public input meetings
April 26, 2022 – County and Schools deadline to complete lines (on agenda for April 19 meeting)
April 27-28, 2022 – County to send Commissioner/SWCD districts to the Office of the Secretary of State
April 28-June 14, 2022 – Update Statewide Voter Registration System
May 3, 2022 – Publish plans
May 17, 2022 – Filing for office opens for federal, state, county, and some cities
July 15, 2022 – Deadline to notify voters of changes
August 9, 2022 – State Primary Election
November 8, 2022 – State General Election
In January 2022, the Scott County Board appointed a group of government staff members to be on the redistricting committee and adhere to rules that ensure equal representation, and transparency.
Redistricting Principles and Standards
The Minnesota Legislature and federal court rulings have provided the State and local government jurisdictions with several principles and standards as guides during redistricting. A concurrent resolution was adopted by the Minnesota Legislature in 1991 establishing the standards for legislative redistricting plans. This is the basis for a similar concurrent resolution to be adopted by the 2021 Legislature.
- District populations may not vary more than 10 percent from the district population mean: Scott County has a population of 150,928. The district population mean is 30,186 people (150,928 divided by 5 districts). A district's boundary would have to be between 27,167 and 33,204 persons to stay within 10 percent of the mean. Ideally districts must be substantially equal in population. However, given the unequal growth rates across Scott County, areas where more rapid growth is projected to occur could have districts that are smaller than the population mean. Smaller districts may be formed in anticipation of reaching the actual population mean during the ten-year period due to growth and annexations.
- Ideal Population for Commissioner and SWCD Districts: The total population of Scott County is 150,928. There are 5 Commissioner and SWCD districts, so the ideal population is 30,186. The Redistricting Committee will also consider where future growth will occur through development or redevelopment of existing lands, where annexations of property from Township to City may occur, and any other factors that will influence district sizes for the next decade.
- The districts must be composed of convenient contiguous territory. A district to the extent consistent with other principles must be compact. Compact is being defined as being as close to a square or circle as possible. These district boundaries, furthermore, must conform to the census tract and census block boundaries and precinct boundaries.
- A city or town must not be divided into more than one district except as necessary to meet equal-population requirements or to form districts that are composed of convenient contiguous territory. During the previous redistricting, Scott County was unable to keep cities intact within commissioner district boundaries, with the exception of the City of Savage.
- Districts should attempt to preserve communities of interest where that can be done in compliance with other principles. 'Communities of interest' is open to interpretation, and may include ethnic interests, rural/urban interests, environmental interests, et cetera. There must be supporting data or information upon which this consideration is identified and used in context of the establishment of districts.
- The districts should attempt to not dilute the voting strength of racial or language minority populations. Racial or language minority populations are not to be divided among districts if the result is to diminish their voting strength. This is primarily a concern for core urban areas and some rural areas in Minnesota.
- For Commissioners elected in 2020, a district election is needed in 2022 only if the redistricting results in greater than a five-percent difference from the average for all districts. For example, if Commissioner District 2 had a population in 2020 that was six percent smaller than the average size of all districts, then an election would be held in 2022. For Commissioner district elections held in 2022, candidates at a minimum must reside in the county after June 15, 2022. Commissioners must reside in the district when elected.