Saturday, September 5, 2009

Some Early Thoughts om Reapportionment.It's 3 years away,but this might be a trend

The reapportionment of the Delaware General Assembly takes place every ten years after the census. The next US census is in 2010 and the next reapportionment will take place in 2012. It is very early to be too specific about what areas will get additional representation in the General Assembly due to an increase in their population in relation to other areas, but there appears to be a trend.

I realize reapportionment is based on population and not the number of registered voters,but I am assuming the number of registered voters in a district is one indication of population and that a dramatic increase in registered voters may be an indicator of a relatively dramatic increase in population. It is possible there is increased voter outreach or a more highly involved citizenry in specific areas,but some of the disparity in registration changes between the last reapportionment in 2002 and 9-1-2009 might be too wide to be explained those factors alone.

While the locations mentioned as potential sites of an additional legislator may seem obvious based on casual observation of real estate development, it is worth reviewing to see if the numbers bear out such observation.

Statewide in 2002 there were 519,816 registered voters. As of 9-1-2009 there were 606,433 registered voters.

Here are the 2002 & 2009 registration numbers for six areas that might be slated to get addition legislative representation and their increase in the percentage of registered voters that each represents between 2002 and 2009.


2002-12,010 voters--2.3% of statewide total

2009-19,758 voters--3.3% of statewide total (increase 7748 voters)

9th-Odessa-St Georges-Port Penn-Delaware City

2002--13,389 voters--2.6% of statewide total

2009--19,365 voters--3.2% of statewide total ( increase 5976 voters)

14th RepDist-Rehoboth Beach-part of Lewes-

2002-- 15,837 voters-- 3.0% of statewide total

2009---19,472 voters--3.2% of statewide total (increase 3635 voters)

28th Rep District-Smyrna-Leipsic-Little Creek
2002---10,670 voters--2.1% of statewide total

2009---14,174 voters--2.3% of statewide total (increase 3504 voters)

29thRep District-Kenton-Hartley-Cheswold-Camden-Wyoming

2002-10,606 voters--2.0% of statewide total

2009--16,955 voters-2.8% of statewide total (increase 6349 voters)

38th-Bethany Beach-Fenwick---

2002-15,901 voters-3.1% of statewide total

2009-18,660 voters-3.1% of statewide total (increase 2759 voters)

These six districts comprised 15.1 % of the registered voters in 2002. In 2009 they comprise 17.9% of the registered voters statewide. Of the 86,617 increase in registered voters between 2002 and 2009, these six districts accounted for 29,971 of this increase.

Population growth affecting reapportionment is not new to some of these areas. The 8th and the 9th Rep district numbers were previously assigned to areas of Brandywine Hundred and moved south to the C&D Canal area in the reapportionments of 1992 (the 9th) and 2002 (the 8th). The 14th Rep District has been assigned to area north of Newark along Kirkwood Highway before the 2002 reapportionment reallocated the number to the beach area.

Title 29 of the Delaware Code Chapter 8,subsection 804 states district should be nearly equal in proportion.

The registration numbers come from the Delaware Elections Commissioner's website.

For 2002 the AGP Report in Election Archives was used.

For 9-1-2009 the link to registration totals was used.

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