The schedule for the citizen-led Redistricting Advisory Committee was recently streamlined to mitigate the impacts from new legislation passed by the Texas Legislature. This unfunded mandate goes into effect Sept. 1 and has the unintended consequence of requiring a special election that could result in a complete turnover of City Council. The new law creates additional expenses for local taxpayers, disrupts continuity of government and is inconsistent with the City Charter, a document recommended by a citizen task force and approved by local voters. The city of Sugar Land has been partnering with its local legislative delegation to update the new law's unintended consequences, but we recognize this process takes time, so the streamlined redistricting process has been adjusted to ensure its completion by Sept. 1.
The 2020 census showed an increase in the City's population, requiring the City's four single member City Council districts to be adjusted. Single member Council districts must be of substantially equal population with a maximum deviation no greater than 1O percent between the most populated and least populated councilmember district.
Redistricting Advisory Committee
Sugar Land City Council appointed a citizen-led Redistricting Advisory Committee charged with making a recommendation on a redistricting plan to the City Council for their consideration.
- Harvey Zinn (chair)
- Bob Barbour
- Chris Barnett
- Sue Chiang
- Himesh Gandhi @(Model.BulletStyle == CivicPlus.Entities.Modules.Layout.Enums.BulletStyle.Decimal ? "ol" : "ul")>
- Jim Levermann
- Sohail Momin
- Mary Von Tungeln
- Bridget Yeung @(Model.BulletStyle == CivicPlus.Entities.Modules.Layout.Enums.BulletStyle.Decimal ? "ol" : "ul")>
Committee meetings will be held from June to August. Outside legal counsel will prepare several redistricting plans based on state and federal law as well as guidelines adopted by City Council.
City Council approved resolution 23-19 that established criteria used in the 2023 redistricting process, created a framework to guide redistricting plans and assisted city efforts to comply with all applicable federal and state laws.
The public is invited to comment on redistricting plans and/or submit other redistricting plans for City Council consideration. Redistricting plans submitted must meet the established criteria and guidelines.
Frequently Asked Questions and Answers
- What is redistricting?
Redistricting is process used to ensure single-member Council districts are substantially equal in population with a maximum deviation no greater than 10 percent between the most populated and least populated council member district.
- Why is redistricting needed?
Redistricting is triggered by changes in population such as the release of new Census figures, annexation, etc. The 2020 Census triggered the need for a redistricting process.
- Who requires redistricting?
Federal and state law requires single-member Council districts to be configured so that they are relatively equal in total population according to the 2020 federal census. This is a requirement of Amendments 14 and 15 of the U.S. Constitution, the Voting Rights Act and the Texas Government Code.
- Does redistricting affect decisions regarding land-use such as apartments?
- Will redistricting affect school district boundaries?
The redistricting process has absolutely no impact on school district boundaries. Only the city’s single-member Council district will be affected. Again, it’s a requirement of state and Federal law.
- Will any city services be eliminated, changed or affected in some way?
- How can I stay updated on the process as it moves forward?
Online - Information on the process, related documents, meeting video, and more will be posted on the city website at www.sugarlandtx.gov/redistricting
Public Meetings - Public meetings will be held during the redistricting process to receive public comments on the proposed redistricting plans; meeting dates and times will be published on the city website.
Archived Meeting Video - Redistricting Advisory Committee meetings will be recorded and available to view online on the next business day after the meeting is held.
- What is a single-member Council district?
The city of Sugar Land is divided into four geographically defined voting districts, each represented by a single elected official.
For any comments, questions, or requests, contact:
Meredith Riede [email@example.com]