State regulations require county officials to keep commission boundaries as equal as possible, and this week the Barton County Commission approved a plan to remap the five commission districts to achieve that purpose.
The changes means that some taxpayers have different commissioners than they did at the time of the last election, but the commissioners urged that they are all working for the whole county.
According to information from the county, “under Kansas statutes, at least once every three years, the commission shall review districting to assure that each of the five is as compact and equal in population as possible.”
County Clerk Donna Zimmerman and Cartographer Bj Wooding explained that the process utilizing computerized information was intended to make all of the districts as comparable as possible.
Wooding added the computer work was used to make the areas as compact as possible, as well.
Zimmerman explained the former map had some serious deficiencies, with large differences in population between a couple of the districts.
The option that was adopted by the commission not only makes the total population levels more fair, but it also insures that each of the districts have both rural and non-rural area.
Commissioner Jennifer Schartz said everyone needs to know they can contact their representative, even with this change. “I want to make sure people know I am available.”
The other commissioners agreed that this change doesn’t alter their desires to represent everyone in the county.
The new commission map can be seen on the county’s website — www.bartoncounty.org.
It is accessible through the county commission page.
At the upper left corner of that page, there is a link to “district map” which will take viewers to the new map.