Home Census Will Adams County have to recut? Supervisors wait for census data to tell – Mississippi’s Best Community Newspaper

Will Adams County have to recut? Supervisors wait for census data to tell – Mississippi’s Best Community Newspaper

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NATCHEZ – Adams County supervisors are awaiting 2020 census data to soon determine if district lines will need to be redrawn.

According to the US Census Bureau, the population of Adams County increased from 32,297 in April 2010 to 29,538 in April 2020 and the population of Natchez increased from 15,792 to 14,520 with a response rate of 59.6%. .

The Census Bureau also estimates that Adams County’s population may have declined by 0.4% between April 2020 and July 2021. However, supervisors are still awaiting a full distribution of the population by district to determine whether a redistribution will be necessary. by the law.

The law requires the county to recut if there is a discrepancy of more than 10% in the electoral population between each of the five districts. Even with a population decline of 2,759 people over the past decade, the county may not have to recut if the population decline is evenly distributed among the districts with a difference of less than 10%.

Adams County Election Commissioner Larry Gardner said he believed the county did not have to redirect the district after the 2010 census because “the districts were still within that 10% margin.” .

Figures from the previous census show that Adams County’s population declined to 32,297 in 2010, from 34,340 in 2000.

When asked if he thought the county should maybe redirect the district, Gardner said, “It seems on the surface based on how many registered voters we have. District 2 has the most registered voters and District 3 has the least with a large gap in between. This is perhaps due in large part to the fact that we have had a lot of new houses built in the Beau Pré area.

However, Gardner said the need for a redistribution would be determined by the number of people of legal voting age living in each district and not the number of people registered to vote, which is the number he based it on. .

If the county is to do a redistribution, officials have said they should start that process soon.

“If we need to redistribute, we need to deal with it ASAP,” Supervisor Warren Gaines said in Monday’s meeting.

Supervisors said they would have to hire a redistribution company to develop the proposed maps first, then issue a public notice and hold public hearings before they can be approved. Supervisor Angela Hutchins said they should know by the next board meeting if a redistribution would be needed.

In other areas, at Monday’s Adams County Board of Supervisors meeting, the board unanimously adopted COVID-19 precautions for employees based on updated guidance from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention which state that those who test positive must self-isolate for a minimum of five days and wear a mask around others for an additional five days.

However, supervisors Ricky Gray have expressed concerns about reducing the isolation period from 10 to five days.

“It seems like every time we turn around it changes,” Gray said. “We have employees with underlying health issues and we tell people with COVID that they can wear a mask and come to work two days after five days instead of 10.”

Adams County Emergency Management Director Robert Bradford also informed supervisors that the transmission of COVID-19 in the community is spreading rapidly.

According to CDC data, Adams County currently has a high rate of transmission of COVID-19 at the community level with 74 new cases reported in the seven days ending December 29 and a positivity rate of 23.8%.

Bradford said the Adams County vault has organized free COVID-19 tests and that out of 80 people tested, half of them have tested positive for COVID-19.

“Omicron is spreading faster than Delta,” he said. “We’re trying not to do another mask term, but if our numbers continue to increase, I could come back to the board with a mask requirement for county buildings to keep our employees safe. “

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