State to re-draw district lines

By Mike McDaniel - bio | email | Twitter | Facebook

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - Lines are set to be drawn during the upcoming legislative session to determine how state districts will be set up.

Once all the state's census numbers are in, populations will determine whether some regions loose or even gain a state lawmaker or two. In the last 10 years, which is how often the districts are done, most local ones have grown by at least 11 percent with one up to 25 percent.

Lawmakers hope to get the lines drawn and approved quickly since next year is also an election year.

"If districts are not equitable across the board then certain people are not getting represented as well. So, it's important to draw district lines that are fair, that follow the law and that are equitable," said Rep. Toby Barker.

"If you're Republican you want to get as many Republicans as you can in your district. If you're Democrat, you want to get as many Democrats as you can in your district for reelections. So, that's just the name of the game and you try to do as much as you can, so we'll just have to see what happens. It's going to be wide open and hopefully we can get it done next year and hopefully will not go to the courts," said Sen. Tom King.

Those census numbers to help determine the districts are expected to come in just after the first of the year.

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