New maps for Weber voters

Jan 31 2012 - 11:59pm

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OGDEN -- The Weber County Commission and Ogden City Council each approved their 2012 official voting maps during their weekly meetings Tuesday.

Weber County Clerk/Auditor Ricky Hatch presented the new map to the commission, showing the new precinct lines within the county.

Through the precincts, the county decides locations of polling places and caucus meetings.

"It will determine how many people are available to come to the caucuses," Hatch said.

The new Weber County map has 159 precincts, an increase of four.

Each precinct can have up to 1,250 active voters, but Hatch said he and his staff tried to limit each precinct to 900 voters to account for future growth.

Hatch said he wanted to keep boundaries as close as possible to the current ones in order to keep neighborhoods together.

"Sometimes it's hard to keep that balance," he said.

The county can alter precincts every two years, unlike state legislative districts, which are changed every 10 years.

The map will now be sent to the Lieutenant Governor's Office, and the information will be used to update the statewide voter registration database.

Through the process, Hatch worked with the Lieutenant Governor's Office to ensure there would be no unforeseen problems.

Hatch and his staff also asked for input from political party leaders.

"This was a very nonpolitical process," Hatch said.

Both Republican and Democratic leaders said they approved of the map.

Weber County Democratic Party Chairman Steve Olsen said the clerk/auditor's staff were accommodating, making them feel included in the process.

"We obviously have problems with the work the Legislature did," Olsen said. "That caused a lot of heartburn, but the work that Ricky did with the boundaries that were drawn, we have a lot of confidence with that."

Along with the voting map, the commission also approved the 2012 boundaries for the Weber School Board.

In Ogden, the city council approved new boundaries for voting precincts for the Ogden School Board.

The precinct reapportionment and realignment still leaves the city with seven precincts, a number established in late 2003. Before that, the city school board had only five precincts.

Ogden City Recorder Cindi Mansell said the realignment of the precinct boundaries is necessitated by changes associated with legislative, Senate and state Board of Education boundary lines, as well as census population counts.

* Ogden School Board Precinct 1 now has a population of 11,710 and consists of voting districts 31-35.

* Precinct 2 now has a population of 11,965 and consists of voting districts 6-12 and 14.

* Precinct 3 now has a population of 11,803 and consists of voting districts 1-5.

* Precinct 4 has a population of 12,140 and consists of voting districts 20-25.

* Precinct 5 has a population of 11,785 and consists of voting districts 36-45.

* Precinct 6 has a population of 12,522 and consists of voting districts 13 and 15-19.

* Precinct 7 has a population of 10,895 and consists of voting districts 26-30.

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