Panel seeking input on new County Council district boundaries

Current boundaries for council districts established by federal judge in 2002.


Not much has changed in south county over the past decade in terms of population, according to data presented to the panel in charge of redrawing County Council district boundaries.

That process is well under way as the county Reapportionment Commission currently is collecting public input on the new boundaries.

Residents can make comments to the commission at the last of three public hearings, which is scheduled for 7 p.m. Monday, July 25, in Room 126 of the J. C. Penney Conference Center, 1 University Blvd., 63121, on the campus of the University of Missouri-St. Louis.

Comments also can be sent to the Reapportionment Commission by email at

A public hearing was scheduled for Monday evening at Lindbergh High School — after the Call went to press.

The 14-member commission convenes every 10 years, per the county Charter, to rework the council map based on the most recent U.S. census.

Commissioners this time must adjust the boundaries so that each district has a population as close as possible to 142,707, or one-seventh of the total county population of 998,952, as reported in the 2010 census.

According to county Department of Planning data:

• Population changed the least in the 6th District, which includes mostly unincorporated south county. Here the population rose to 145,620 in 2010 from 145,178 in 2000 — a 0.3-percent increase. The current population exceeds the district target by 2,913.

• The largest change in population is in the 1st District, which includes Ferguson and Jennings. There the population decreased by 7.7 percent, from 145,045 in 2000 to 133,830 in 2010. The current population falls short of the district target by 8,877, the largest variance from that number out of all the districts.

• The 7th District produced the second-largest variance — but in the opposite direction. The district, which includes Wildwood and Ballwin, had a 2010 population of 150,730 — a 3.8-percent increase from the 2000 population of 145,149. The current population is 8,023 greater than the district target.

• The smallest variance is in the 5th District, which includes Clayton and Webster Groves. The population fell to 142,317 in 2010 from 145,092 in 2000 — a nearly 2-percent decrease. The new number is 390 less than the district target.

• In the 2nd District, which includes Bridgeton and St. Ann, the population decreased to 139,060 in 2010 from 145,239 in 2000 — a 4.3-percent decline. The current population falls short of the district target by 3,647.

• The 3rd District, which includes Creve Coeur and Des Peres, experienced a 1.4-percent increase in population, from 145,236 in 2000 to 147,228 in 2010. The new population exceeds the district target by 4,521.

• In the 4th District, which includes Florissant and Black Jack, the population decreased to 140,167 in 2010 from 145,376 in 2000 — a 3.6-percent decline. The current population is 2,540 less than the district target.

The total county population decreased to 998,952 in 2010 from 1,026,300 in 2000 — a 1.7-percent drop.

Total municipal population decreased by 2.2 percent, from 694,860 in 2000 to 679,262 in 2010.

Unincorporated areas saw a 0.5-percent decrease in population, from 321,440 in 2000 to 319,692 in 2010.

County Executive Charlie Dooley in May appointed one Democrat and one Republican from each of the seven council districts to serve on the Reapportionment Commission from lists provided by each party’s central committee, as required by the Charter. Commission members are:

• 1st District: Former state Rep. Donald Calloway of Bel-Nor, Democrat, and Sarah Davoli, University Township committeewoman, Republican.

• 2nd District: Rhoda Gwaltney, Democrat, and Becky Buwalda, Airport Township committeewoman, Republican.

• 3rd District: Former state Rep. Sam Page of Creve Coeur, Democrat, and Jeff Yorg, Republican.

• 4th District: James McHugh, Democrat, and Bryan Koen, Florissant Township committeeman, Republican.

• 5th District: Art Martin, Democrat, and David Stokes, Republican.

• 6th District: Former County Councilman Jeff Wagener, Democrat, and former state Rep. Jack Goldman, Republican.

• 7th District: Francis “Butch” Miller, Democrat, and former state Rep. Allen Icet of Wildwood, Republican.

Calloway and Icet are the commission’s co-chairs.

After this month’s public hearings, the commission will begin deliberating over new boundaries in August and September and may come up with several alternative maps, according to Icet. Those options will go out to the public in October for final comment, he said.

“And then I believe Nov. 1 is the deadline set for the commission that we will have to attempt to agree and put a specific map forward,” Icet said at the commission’s first public hearing last week in Clayton.

The new map must receive nine affirmative votes from the commission to win approval.

Ten years ago, the previous Reapportionment Commission deadlocked along party lines on a new map during a seven-hour meeting that concluded at 1 a.m. on the Dec. 28, 2001, deadline. New council-district boundaries were established by U.S. District Judge Catharine Perry in February 2002.