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County districts are redrawn

The boundaries have changed, and some residents of Archuleta County are now represented by a different county commissioner.

Per C.R.S. 30-10-306, counties are to be divided into three compact commissioner districts by the BoCC, with each district being as equal in population as possible based on the most recent federal census of the United States.

Following the release of 2010 Census data, it was discovered that Archuleta County’s districts were not as equal as they should be, with a discrepancy in District 3 of 1,300 people, so county staff, including Clerk June Madrid and GIS personnel went to work.

If left untouched following the 2010 Census, the total for each district would have been as follows: District 1 would contain 4,542 people, District 2 would have 4,438 residents and District 3 would hold 3,104 people.

In presenting the new commissioner districts to the BoCC for approval, County Attorney Todd Starr said the changes to each district were minimal.

The new districts are as follows: District 1 now holds 4,027 people, District 2 holds 4,035 people and District 3 holds 4,022 people.

Madrid said those affected by the boundary change, which now follows natural lines (such as Piedra Road), are in Precinct 7, or the Pagosa Lakes area.

Madrid explained that the tip of Precinct 7 was moved into District 1, while a portion of the right side of the precinct was moved to District 3.

In a previous BoCC work session on the matter, Madrid said the process is not based on voters, but on population

Later, Madrid added that although districts are not based on active voters, precincts within each district are.

According to a handout provided by Madrid at the work session, the total number of registered voters at the time of the realignment work was 9,440 and, compared with the Census population of 12,084, it appeared that inactive voters (those who failed to vote in the last election or had mail returned by the post office) had moved.

Those wishing to check their district status will soon be able to view a map in the elections office.

A voter’s precinct and district will also be printed on voter informations cards mailed out prior to this fall’s election, with Madrid urging voters to pay attention to possible changes.

The redistricting will not affect the voting process for Archuleta County since the county conducts elections at polling centers, Madrid said.

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