Citizens for Independent Redistricting Fort Worth

The Answer To Drawing
a Fair 10-District City Council Map

We believe that Citizens should decide the boundaries of their own community districts instead of city council members picking the precincts most likely to vote for them.

Austin citizens voted for independently drawn maps, and we can accomplish the same in Fort Worth with the help of a diverse group of citizens and civic organizations that support this concept.

About Us


logo


We are Citizens for Independent Redistricting Fort Worth.
We want to enact an independent citizens redistricting process in Fort Worth.

man speaking at meeting
people speaking at meeting

In 2021, the Fort Worth City Council will expand from 8 to 10 districts. Currently, elected city council members determine the boundaries of their own districts. We believe that power shouldn’t belong to council members and that there’s a better way. Independent Citizens Redistricting Commissions have been used in statewide elections in Arizona and California, and voters in 4 other states passed similar initiatives in November 2018. The City of Austin used this process to draw its city council districts in 2014.

Instead of city council members picking the precincts most likely to vote for them, we believe that citizens should decide the boundaries of their own community districts. While congressional redistricting by citizens is now being practiced in about a half-dozen states, Austin is the only Texas city that has adopted it. We can accomplish the same in Fort Worth with the help of a diverse group of citizens and civic organizations that support this concept.

There are several compelling reasons for considering independent citizen redistricting at this time. In 2020, we will have a new census and shortly thereafter, the city council will add 2 new districts.

Anticipating these coming changes, the city's Race and Culture Task Force recommended that Fort Worth consider adopting an independent citizens redistricting process (photos left).

The city council rejected the Task Force's recommendation with the intent of holding onto its direct control over the drawing of district lines. We believe the choice should be put to the voters.

Do you believe elected leaders can draw the boundaries of our municipal districts free from any temptation to gerrymander safe seats for themselves?

Or do you believe that citizens are better qualified to protect our community and neighborhood integrity?

Do you believe elected leaders can draw the boundaries of our municipal districts free from any temptation to gerrymander safe seats for themselves?


Or do you believe that citizens are better qualified to protect our community and neighborhood integrity?

Our Mission

Citizens for Independent Redistricting Fort Worth advocates the selection of city council districts by an independent commission in an open process that will preserve neighborhood and community integrity and prevent the inequalities incurred by gerrymandering.

Our Vision

blank paper

Our Vision is to find people from every neighborhood, every ethnicity, who are passionate about this city, and will work together to create a new Ten District City Council Map that will honor established neighborhoods and create a fair, balanced representation for each citizen of Fort Worth.

Action Plan

logo

In 2021, the Fort Worth City Council will expand from 8 to 10 districts. Currently, elected city council members determine the boundaries of their own districts. We believe that power shouldn’t belong to council members and that there’s a better way. Independent Citizens Redistricting Commissions have been used in statewide elections in Arizona and California, and voters in 4 other states passed similar initiatives in November 2018. The City of Austin used this process to draw its city council districts in 2014.

Why right now in Fort Worth?

All council districts are to be redrawn after the 2020 census with the addition of 2 new seats.

Race and Culture Task Force recommended this process – let’s address those concerns and not ignore their work.

This is a proven methodology that has had success across the country. We are not recreating the wheel.

Total reconfiguration of the existing council districts when Fort Worth moves from 8 to 10 single member districts.

In the 2012 redistricting, “Incumbent Addresses” was one of the criteria considered.

We believe that Politicians should not choose their voters.







District Boundary Criteria

To avoid favoring any special group of candidates districts shall:

have reasonably equal population with other districts and be geographically contiguous and compact using existing election precincts and identifiable geographic boundaries.

Comply with the federal Voting Rights Act.

Respect the geographic integrity of any local neighborhood or local community of interest in a manner that minimizes their division.

A "community of interest" is a contiguous population that shares common social and economic interests.

The place of residence of any incumbent or potential political candidate shall not be considered in the creation of a plan or any district.


Commission Selection

In order to create a truly independent commission without bias or a political agenda:

City of FW Auditor shall initiate and widely publicize an application process in a manner that promotes a large, diverse (by race, ethnicity, gender, and geography) qualified Applicant Review Panel and Commissioner Applicant Pool.

Applicant Review Panel shall be made up of 3 independent Auditors drawn from the application pool. Panel shall ensure all applicants in Commissioner Applicant Pool fit commission member criteria.

Panel shall select a pool of 60 applicants from the qualified applicants. City of FW Auditor shall draw by lottery 9 names and these 9 will serve on the Commission. These 9 Commissioners shall choose 6 additional applicants from the remaining pool to ensure diversity reflective of FW and at least one member from each existing Council district.

These 15 applicants shall make up the Citizens Redistricting Commission.


Commission Member Criteria #1

In order to avoid any real or implied conflict of interest, each commission member must:

Be a voter continuously registered in the City of Fort Worth for the past 5 or more years.

Shall have voted in at least 3 of the last 5 City of FW general elections.

Be ineligible for 10 years to hold elective public office for the City of Fort Worth.

Commission Member Criteria #2

For 3 years be ineligible to:
1) to hold appointive public office for the City of FW;
2) to serve as paid staff for or as a paid consultant to the City of FW, the City Council or any member of the City Council;
3) to receive a non-competitively bid contract with the City of FW.

Within past 3 years have not been:
1) a paid employee of the City of FW;
2) person performing paid services under a professional or political contract to the City of FW, to the City Council, or to any member of the City Council;
3) any controlling person of any such consultant
4) or a spouse of any of the foregoing.

Commission Member Criteria #3

Within 5-years either applicant or their spouse shall not have:
1) Been appointed to, elected to, or have been a candidate for state or city office,
2) Served as an officer, employee, or paid consultant of a political party or of the campaign committee of a candidate for elective state, county or city office,
3) Been a registered state or local lobbyist 4) Contributed or bundled $1,000 or more in aggregate to candidates for City of FW elective office in the last city election.


Next Steps in
Activities for Approval

In order to effectively complete its goals with complete transparency and citizen input:
  • Commission shall hire staff, legal counsel, and consultants as needed.
  • Commission shall establish and implement an open hearing process for public input.
  • Records of the commission and all data considered are public records.
  • Shall be at least 4 public hearings, geographically dispersed following the preliminary plan approval.
  • Public comment shall be taken for 14 days.
  • Commission shall vote on final plan and hold at least 2 public hearings, one north and one south.
  • Shall have 5 days for additional public comments.
  • Commission shall be done with hearings and adopt a final plan no later than November 1, 2021.
current 8 member Fort Worth district map

Get Involved!


Every resident of Fort Worth is affected by the future city council zoning maps. This is the opportunity for you to get involved and help draw the future of Fort Worth.

Contact Us

Latest News


Resource documents, publications, community events and redistricting news.

research notebooks

Resources

Documents and publications from other sources. Enlargeable maps, documentation from other cities who have tackled redistricting.

Resources
local events calendar

Local Events

As we get started, this is where will we keep you updated on local meetings and other redistricting events, both for State and local.

Calendar
news blog post

Redistricting News

Redistricting is a hot topic right now. Citizens in other cities and throughout Texas are grappling with redistricting and how best to create better representation for themselves.

News Articles

Keep Informed

logo

We need your support and participation to make Independent Redistricting become a reality. We are just getting started to build a coalition of like-minded citizens who want a fair and citizen-drawn city council districts map.

Contact Details

Citizens for Independent Redistricting

Subscribe to our Mailing List

* indicates required
/ ( mm / dd )

Committee Members


logo

We are the startup ignition committee. We are iniating the website, social media, email lists and all the necessary paperwork to get an Independent Redistricting Commission on the ballots for citizens to decide how the city will be represented in the future.

Charles Boswell

Advisor, former City Manager


Byrwec Ellison

Communications & Social Media


Fernando Florez

Hispanic Community Outreach


Bruce N. Miller

TCU Physics Professor, retired


Casey Tounget

Committee Member




Website Production

Genifer Corley and Kat Kroll