Henrico’s redistricting process begins

With fresh data in hand from the U.S. Census of 2010, Henrico County officials are beginning in earnest the three-month process of redrawing the boundaries of the county's five magisterial districts.

Census results show that the county's population increased by 17 percent from 2000 – from 262,300 to 306,935 – with the greatest percentage of growth occurring in the Three Chopt District. The population of that district jumped by 32 percent from 2000, to 72,035, meaning that its borders will shrink during the redistricting process.

Dividing the county's total population by five means that the "ideal" district should contain 61,387 people. The Brookland District comes closest to that ideal number in its current form, missing by just 0.15 percent. Three Chopt deviates from the ideal number by more than 17 percent. The Fairfield District (4.9 percent lower than the ideal number), Tuckahoe District (9.2 percent lower) and Varina District (3.3 percent lower) all fall below the threshold and likely will see their boundaries grow.

To educate the public about the redistricting process, Henrico officials will host two public information sessions – one at the Eastern Henrico Government Center and one at the Western Henrico Government Center in mid-March. The Board of Supervisors will hold public hearings to solicit input from citizens at its March 22 and April 12 meetings at the Western Government Center.

The county also will launch a website, http://www.henricoredistricting.com withi,n a matter of days to provide information and opportunities for public input.

Census data shows that the county's white population grew by only 958 people during the past decade, while the black population grew by nearly 26,000. Whites now comprise 59 percent of the county's population, while blacks comprise nearly 40 percent.

Henrico's Asian population grew by more than 112 percent – from 9,451 to 20,052 – and now represents 6.5 percent of the overall population.

For more on this story, read the March 3 print edition of the Henrico Citizen.
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