More council district shifts proposed

December 16, 2011
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New maps are now appearing at a regular clip as Boston City Council presses on with its efforts redraw its districts.

The latest redistricting map, unveiled at a hearing on Dec. 7, is the second put forward by City Councilor Bill Linehan, chair of the council’s Committee on the Census and Redistricting.

In it, he moves two precincts that were formerly in District 8—Ward 10 Precinct 4 and Ward 10 Precinct 8—into Jamaica Plain’s District 6.

Ward 10 Precinct 8 includes S. Huntington Avenue and some of Hyde Square. Ward 10 Precinct 4 is entirely in Mission Hill.

Linehan’s latest plan also moves the Egleston Square/Parkside’s Ward 11 Precinct 5 from District 7—currently represented by Tito Jackson—into District 6.

In a previous proposal, Linehan had suggested moving all of Mission Hill into District 6. That proposal met with opposition from District 6 City Councilor Matt O’Malley and District 8 City Councilor Mike Ross. Because Ross lives in Mission Hill, it would have put both of them in the same district.

They both put forward the same alternative plan—independently, they told the Gazette—that would have moved Ward 10 Precinct 8 into District 6, but kept most of Mission Hill in District 8.

Speaking to the Gazette last week, O’Malley said he is not a fan of Linehan’s latest proposal, in part because he thinks Ward 10 Precinct 4 should remain united with the rest of Mission Hill. “It’s really slicing Mission Hill in two,” O’Malley said.

The City Council continues to meet at least weekly to discuss redistricting, O’Malley said, but he does not expect a final map any time soon.

“The process has been good so far, and it needs to continue,” he said.