County holds public hearing on proposed commission districts

By BRAD GASKINS / Staff Writer

COLUMBIANA – Shelby County held a public hearing July 18 at the County Administration Building to discuss the redistricting of the county’s nine commission districts.

With a 2010 population of 195,085, the ideal population size of each of the nine commission districts is 21,676.

The public hearing gave county residents a chance to comment on the proposed districts.

Map of proposed districts. (Contributed / Shelby County)

Eric Womack, of the county’s department of development services, gave a brief presentation of the proposed districts, once at 5 p.m. and again at 7 p.m.

During the 5 p.m. hearing, Alabaster City Administrator George Henry said Alabaster was opposed to the new districts. Henry said under the proposed districts the city would be divided among five commission districts.

Alabaster Councilman Rick Walters also spoke against the proposed districts. Noting he was speaking for himself and not the city, Walters seconded Henry’s opinion. Walters said the proposed districts would split Alabaster among too many commission districts.

Pelham was scheduled to have a representative present during the 7 p.m. hearing.

Earlier in the day during a work session, the Pelham City Council agreed to send Councilman Bill Meadows to the 7 p.m. hearing. Other council members said the proposed districts would divide Pelham among too many county commissioners.

The proposed new districts:

In District 1, represented by Corley Ellis, population would increase from 16,907 to 21,720, including a minority population of 3,716.

In District 2, represented by Tommy Edwards, population would increase from 19,838 to 21,568, including a minority population of 7,956.

In District 3, represented by Jon Parker, population would decrease from 23,625 to 21,897, including a minority population of 4,631.

In District 4, represented by Daniel Acker, population would increase from 18,818 to 21,777, including a minority population of 6,090.

In District 5, represented by Joel Bearden, population would decrease from 21,663 to 21,639, including a minority population of 3,623.

In District 6, represented by Larry Dillard, population would increase from 21,250 to 21,298, including a minority population of 3,784.

In District 7, represented by Lindsey Allison, population would increase from 18,401 to 21,350, including a minority population of 3,406.

In District 8, represented by Rick Shepherd, population would decrease from 25,600 to 21,873, including a minority population of 2,876.

In District 9, represented by Robbie Hayes, population would decrease from 28,983 to 21,963, including a minority population of 2,632.