Lawmakers applauded the announcement that Utah gained a fourth congressional seat after the release of the 2010 census report Tuesday.
"We've been fairly certain for some time that we would gain that seat," said Rep. Brad Dee, R-Washington Terrace.
Dee said state legislators will organize a commission that will work on redistricting the state.
The state legislature has the authority through the state constitution to draw district lines, Dee said.
That commission will not be formed until close to the end of the 2011 legislative session, Dee said.
The new districts will impact the 2012 election, and for Utah that means, "it gives us, obviously, a louder voice in Washington, D.C.," Dee said.
Rep. Rob Bishop, R-Utah, issued a statement Tuesday morning.
In it he says, that "Utahns will have greater representation in Congress," but "This is something that should have occurred 10 years ago and I still believe that the process should be improved to include a more accurate count."
Utah officials argued in 2000 that the federal government should have counted more than 11,000 missionaries for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who were serving overseas, as federal employees and military personnel are. But that argument was not successful and many believed Utah was cheated out of an additional seat.
The new seat impacts the state's influence in presidential elections through the Electoral College and also could impact a number of federal issues, officials said.
Bishop said he worked on redistricting when he was a state legislator and "I know first-hand some challenges that are ahead."
Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, also issued a statement on Tuesday.
He wrote, "This is a terrific day for the people of our great state. Utah is one of the most vibrant and fastest growing states in America and will now have more appropriate representation in Congress."
Hatch said Utah missed getting the fourth seat by 857 residents.
He also wrote that he believes "the Utah legislature will draw a fair congressional map."
Utah was one of eight states to gain at least one seat. Texas gained four seats, bringing its total to 36 seats in Congress.
Ten states lost seats, including New York, which lost two, bringing its total to 27 seats.
For more information about the census report, go to http://2010.census.gov/2010census.