Redistricting Resources and Operations
-- creating balanced congressional and state legislative districts
-- transitioning from Census 2010; preparing for Census 2020
The Census 2020 redistricting data will be delivered to states by March 2021. Preparations for use of these data and development of Census 2020-based plans should be underway by March 2020. Existing 2010-based plans should be in redistricting packages by late 2020.
This section focuses on use of tools and data for redistricting a state by congressional districts (CDs) and a state by state legislative districts (SLDs) using decennial census geographic and demographic data.
Using GIS & GeoDemographics
Today one person can do what perhaps a team of 10 people would be required to do for a similar redistricting application following the 2010 census. Possibly more significant is the ability to convey alternative plans to a wider set of stakeholders, more easily and less expensively, through the Internet -- a capability which has grown almost infinitely.
The Constitutionally mandated reason for the decennial census is for Congressional reapportionment and the closely associated redistricting process. Decennial census geographic and demographic data resources for use in reapportionment and redistricting are described in a separate document.
Decennial census data are widely used in other types of districting applications. Local and state governments must redraw boundaries to reflect changes in population size and composition. Redistricting applications include redistricting state legislatures, other types of statewide geographic area redistrictings, regional management areas, sales territories, school districts (attendance areas and election areas), fire districts, police beats, city election districts, and other types of geography.
Role of GIS
Advancements in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) offer new, faster, less expensive, and [potentially] more accurate means of completing a successful redistricting operation. Advancements in Internet-related technologies make it inexpensively and readily achievable to make the results of multiple proposed plans available for viewing with a Web browser. As a result, more stakeholders have a better opportunity to review the scope of proposed alternative plans. Finally, the results of the plans remain something of a living resource--the GIS can be restarted at any time, if the components are all retained and documented, and revisions can be made without starting over with paper-sourced materials.
Resources listed below can help you implement effective redistricting solutions.
Using CV XE GIS to perform redistricting in a Windows environment requires these elements:
The key to successful use of any set of software and data software to develop district plans extension involves 1) understanding how to establish the base data that convey the "starting point" for the plan and 2) how to define parameters and deviations acceptable in the redistricting process, and 3) acquiring and making the data components available in the required formats and locations.
GIS software can then help create a plan and alternative plans. The mapping software helps you create and view a plan, manipulate and assign district elements (e.g. census blocks), and dynamically recalculate statistical measures for the districts.
Support Using these Resources
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ProximityOne develops geographic-demographic-economic data and analytical tools and helps organizations knit together and use diverse data in a decision-making and analytical framework. We develop custom demographic/economic estimates and projections, develop geographic and geocoded address files, and assist with impact and geospatial analyses. Wide-ranging organizations use our software, data and methodologies to analyze their own data integrated with other data. Follow ProximityOne on Twitter at www.twitter.com/proximityone. Contact ProximityOne (888-364-7656) with questions about data covered in this section or to discuss custom estimates, projections or analyses for your areas of interest.