CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) — West Virginia lawmakers are preparing to draw the map that will determine where they politically represent, and they want the public’s input.
West Virginia legislators have begun public hearings across the Mountain State to get your opinion on where district lines should be drawn.
“The public deserves a process that is as fair, transparent, and representative as possible,” said Speaker Roger Hanshaw, (R) Clay, District 33.
July 27: Putnam County Judicial Building, 12093 Winfield Road Winfield, WV 25213
July 29: Chief Logan State Park, 376 Little Buffalo Creek Rd, Logan, WV 25601
Aug. 3: Tamarack, 1 Tamarack Park, Beckley, WV 25801
Aug. 4: Summersville Arena & Conference Center, 3 Armory Way, Summersville, WV 26651
Aug. 10: Stonewall Resort State Park, 149 State Park Trail, Roanoke, WV 26447
Aug. 12: Morgantown (specific location to be announced at a later date)
Aug. 17: Martinsburg Sheriff’s Office Meeting Room, 510 S Raleigh St, Martinsburg, WV 25401
Aug. 18: Keyser VFD Station 2, 1550 Cornell St Keyser WV 26726
Aug. 24: Wheeling Independence Hall, 1528 Market St, Wheeling, WV 26003
Aug. 26: Cabell County Courthouse, 750 5th Ave, Huntington, WV 25701
Sept. 9: The Culture Center, Building 9, Capitol Complex, 1900 Kanawha Blvd. E., Charleston, WV 25305
Sept. 16: Judge Donald F. Black Courthouse Annex, 317 Market St, Parkersburg, WV 26101
West Virginia’s constitution requires a redraw of these lines every ten years using census data to reflect population changes.
“The number one most important question is, are the districts equal in population. Because we are a small state, we are 41st in size nationally…there may only be one or two possible configurations available for the committee to consider,” said Hanshaw.
And with the population declining, West Virginia is expected to lose one of its three congressional seats in Washington, the state’s 67 delegates will be increased to 100 single-member districts.
“West Virginia’s delegation to the house of representatives will now be two people so we now have to somehow divide the state in half. And this series of public hearings are designed to give the public an opportunity to tell us how to do that,” said Hanshaw.
A special legislative session is expected to be held in October. In the Meantime, 12 in-person and three virtual public hearings will take place.