Justice Dept. approves redistricting; opponents still unhappy

JACKSON — The U.S. Justice Department has approved Hinds County’s redistricting plan, but opponents remain unhappy.

Critics of the plan say it leaves a number of communities fragmented for no good reason.

A department spokesman said the plan was approved last week.

The plan’s opponents say it splits apart communities that have long voted together.

For instance, Pete Perrry of the Hinds County Republican Executive Committee said that Raymond and Clinton are now split up.

“Raymond and Clinton are perfect examples of being split up. It violates every principal of redistricting,” Perry said.

Perry said opponents are considering whether to go to court with an alternate plan.

Those who ran for election last November under the old district maps won’t have to run again — a concern voiced when supervisors approved the new maps for which Justice Department approval is required.

Hinds County’s redistricting effort was complicated and included objections by some to the board’s selection of a consultant to lead the process and craft the new maps.

When supervisors held a public hearing less than a week before their vote, they still had no proposed maps to show. It was only the morning of the vote that three of the four proposed maps appeared on the county’s website.

A fourth proposal — the one supervisors adopted Feb. 28 — came together later that day, according to The Clarion-Ledger.

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