New ward lines could cause problems

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 16, 2016

On Saturday morning as I walked along with a group of campaign workers throughout some areas of Ward 4 distributing campaign literature and introducing myself, meeting my constituents and sharing my platform with the citizens who live in Ward 4, I encountered what appears to be some very grave problems and concerns.

The wards in 2, 4, 5 and 6 have changed; the wards in 1 and 3 have primarily remained the same. As we walked from area to area distributing my literature, some of us were informed by the head of the house that we were in the incorrect ward distributing literature.

Regardless of how I tried to explain to some of the residents, they still didn’t understand where they should vote. My campaigners and I were told they have lived in the same house for over 20 years and that they always voted in Ward 2. I was hesitant and went back to examine the map for Ward 4 to be sure I was correct about the ward. Several times we attempted to show where the newly drawn ward lines are on the redistricted map and explained how part of Ward 2 is now a part of Ward 4.

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It was somewhat difficult to get the citizens to distinguish where the new ward lines had been drawn and where the old ward lines had changed. The recent redistricting plan reappropriated some of the houses in Wards 2, 4, 5, and 6. Many of the citizens do not understand where these lines now fall. It is imperative to show exactly where the ward lines begin and end.

It is my concern this will cause a serious problem in the aldermen races. I want the citizens to know these redistricting lines were implemented recently, and if they did not read the newspaper and become knowledgeable about the redistricting, then it may be possible they show up at the incorrect polling precinct, therefore, they will not be able to cast their vote for the candidate of their choice on May 10, 2016.

I believe The Natchez Democrat should print a map that shows each newly redistricted area with the correct street name for each ward so the citizens will be knowledgeable of this information. There were some areas where the street name was not on our map and should have been.


Barbara Crenshaw