Gulfport City Council weighs redrawing district lines

The City of Gulfport must redraw its ward lines after a population shift over the last ten years. Several plans have been brought forward.

The 2020 Census found that about 40 percent of Gulfport’s population lives north of the interstate and the city’s population is now about 40 percent black, an increase from ten years ago.

Ward 6 Councilman R Lee Flowers supports plan three for redrawing the district lines. Currently, Orange Grove is covered by two wards and about 50 percent of a third ward. The third plan would have two wards and about 80 percent of a third one covering Orange Grove.

There are seven city council seats in all and the next election is three years from now so there is time to work out the details. Flowers says there is no need to rush the decision. “The idea is to have one person’s vote equal another’s vote. So, one man, one vote. You try to keep that as balanced as possible. You also want to keep like communities together, subdivisions, you don’t want to divide a subdivision down a road where the neighbor looking at the other neighbor is in a different ward — you can’t.”

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