BCDP Redistricting Blog

 

Redistricting Update – December 13, 2021

 

Congressional Redistricting:

The SC Senate and SC House have both released their proposed Congressional redistricting maps and they look very different.   Beaufort County is in a re-formed Congressional District 1 in the SC Senate proposal and Beaufort County is in Congressional District 2 in the SC House proposal.  The Ad Hoc Committee is scheduled to have its initial meeting on Congressional plans on Thursday, December 16 at noon.  The Ad Hoc Committee will hear testimony on the House Staff Plan, the Senate Staff Plan, and any other submissions.

SC Senate Proposed Congressional Map

SC House Proposed Congressional Map

 

Senate and House Legislative Districts:

The SC House passed its proposed state house legislative district map on December 6 and the SC Senate gave a 2nd reading to their proposed maps and adopted the House maps as part of S. 865 on December 8th.  One amendment was adopted on the Senate floor to correct some split precincts in Senate Districts, 2, 6, and 7.

 

Most analysts agree that the Assembly adopted SC Senate map is appropriate for the shifting demographics and no Senate district is competitive than the current districts.  In addition, the Senate held multiple hearings throughout their process, encouraging public participation at every step of the redistricting.

 

In contrast, the SC House map is a major step backward from the current map.  The SC League of Women Voters notes that the Assembly adopted the SC House district map in terms of partisan bias is extreme with competitive House districts decreasing to only 9 out of the 124 districts.  Even the Chair of the SC Senate Redistricting Committee, Luke Rankin, noted the lack of transparency of the House redistricting process.

 

Beaufort County Council
In direct response to the testimony provided by the Beaufort County Democratic Party and other community organizations, the Beaufort County Council agreed to changes in their proposed County districts to preserve communities of interest.  Major changes include reconfiguring the Hilton Head Island Historic Gullah Neighborhood so that 12.5 of the 14 neighborhoods are included in District 10 instead of split between District 10 and 11.  Other changes include:

  • Buck Island/Simmonsville corridor in Bluffton that is home to many of the town’s oldest Gullah families is in District 9.

  • Old Miller Road/Stony Creek community has been placed in District 9.

  • Rugrack Rd and Morrall Dr is placed into District 1.

  • Small portion of Baynard Rd is placed in District 5.

The Beaufort County Council approved the maps (1st Reading) on December 13.   The 2nd reading will take place on January 10 followed by the 3rd reading on January 24th.


Town of Hilton Head Island

On December 8 the Hilton Head Town Council adopted a resolution to contract with the SC Revenue and Fiscal Affairs Office to develop baseline maps by the end of the year.  After the receipt of those maps, the Town Council staff will begin to develop proposed maps to fit the shifting population within the Town limits to be publicized for public comment prior to final adoption.