The work session and City Manager’s briefing was held at 12:31 p.m. Mayor Johnson recognized Alderman Purtee to offer an invocation.


PRESENT: Mayor Van R. Johnson, II, Presiding

Alderwoman Kesha Gibson-Carter, At-Large, Post 1, Chairman

Alderwoman Alicia Miller Blakely, At-Large, Post 2

Alderwoman Bernetta B. Lanier, District 1

Alderman Detric Leggett, District  2

Alderwoman Linda Wilder-Bryan, District 3

Alderman Nick Palumbo, District 4, Vice-Chairman

Alderwoman Dr. Estella Edwards Shabazz, District 5, Mayor Pro-Tem

Alderman Kurtis Purtee, District 6


City Manager Joseph A. Melder

Chief of Staff Daphanie Williams

City Attorney Bates Lovett

Clerk of Council Mark Massey

Deputy Clerk of Council Margaret Fox

Workshop Agenda Items
1. Initial Briefing Regarding the Redistricting of City District Boundaries per the 2020 Decennial Census

Mayor Johnson shared information on the census for the City and indicated the discussion will be concerning the process.  Mayor Johnson introduced Melanie Wilson, MPC Executive Director.  Ms. Wilson introduced Ms. Brianna Davis, a Planner and GIS Analysis at MPC who helped with gathering the information for the PowerPoint presentation.

Ms. Wilson distributed the presentation to Council Members along with maps of their respective districts. Mayor Johnson received maps of all districts and At Large Post 1 and Post 2 Alderwomen received the map of the entire City. Ms. Wilson will give the maps of all districts to Alderwoman Gibson-Carter (At Large Post 1) and Alderwoman Miller Blakely (At Large Post 2) before close of business today.

The 2020 Census is complete, State lines are drawn, County lines are in the process of being improved and now City district lines must be drawn prior to the 2023 elections.  According to the Department of Justice data, the City's population has grown and shifted.  This will effect the districts being reevaluated.

For clarification, Mayor Johnson indicated the census is about people and not land and after the City's redistricting, if the Voting Rights Law is put back in place, the redistricting plan could require the Department of Justice approval.  Right now it is not required, there are no drastic changes with respect to the mapping.  District 1 was the only area with the most increase in population.  Redistricting will start from District 1 to make sure each District reaches the required 24,630 population (having a grace of plus or minus 2.5%), effective January 2024 which is after the elections of 2023.  

Following the PowerPoint presentation by Ms. Wilson, Council discussed and asked questions concerning the City's redistricting.  Some topics discussed are listed below:

  • Does redistricting have to be challenged to go to the Department of Justice (Alderwoman Lanier). 
  • Ms. Wilson was asked to explain how the difference between reapprotionment and redistricting.  How are shared boundaries are handled (Alderwoman Wilder-Bryan).
  • Advised the public to go on-line through Google to the 2020 Census to see the population demographic changes (Alderwoman Miller Blakely).
  • Asked what type of community education or outreach is being provided (Alderman Purtee).

Ms. Wilson will meet individually with each Alderman/Alderwoman to discuss and explain current district boundaries and the proposed new boundaries.  From there, she will provide updated maps for each district.

Mayor Johnson adjourned the Workshop at 1:21 p.m.



A video recording of the workshop can be found by copying and inserting the link below in your url:




Mark Massey, Clerk of Council

Date Minutes Approved:     January 27, 2022 


Signature:   MM 

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