Maryland Legislative Redistricting Maps (Proposed)

Posted on December 18, 2011

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BREAKING NEWS

THIS MARYLAND MAP SHOWS THE LEGISLATIVE DISTRICTS ESTABLISHED AFETER THE 2000 CENSUS. FOR A MAP OF THE NEW DISTRICTS, CLICK THE DEPARTMENT OF PLANNING LINK IN THE TEXT BELOW.

Gov. Martin O’Malley’s Redistricting Advisory Committee released late Friday a proposal for redrawing legislative districts for the State Senate and House of Delegates, as required under the 2010 Census. This being the last shopping weekend before Christmas, most news outlets in the state have yet to cover the story. Full data and maps are available at the Maryland Department of Planning Web site.  The page includes an interactive map allowing you to zoom in on any part of the state, plus individual maps for each region and the largest counties.

The Eastern Shore will continue to be represented by three State Senate districts, District 36, 37 and 38, with a total of three state senators and nine members of the House of Delegates. The North Shore area of Cecil and Harford Counties is District 35. See a map of the Proposed Eastern Shore Districts here.

A public hearing on the proposal is scheduled on Thursday, Dec. 22, in Annapolis. The General Assembly must approve a redistricting plan in the 2012 legislative session, which begins in January. The new districts will be used for the first time in the 2014 General Assembly elections.

The District lines on the Lower Eastern Shore have changed notably. A medium-sized chunk of Wicomico County, south of Salisbury, has been moved from District 38 to District 37, in order to rebalance population. (Wicomico County experienced significant population growth between the 2000 and 2010 censuses.)

SEN. JIM MATHIAS

Most of the Southern Eastern Shore remains in District 38, which is represented by Sen. Jim Mathias, the former Ocean City mayor, who is a Democrat. The new District 38 boundaries should be favorable to Mathias if he runs for reelection in 2014.

District 37, represented by Sen. Richard Colburn, would include the western half of Wicomico County, as well as Dorchester and Talbot Counties, and part of Caroline County. District 36, represented by Sen. E.J. Pipkin, would include the northern part of Caroline county, as well as Queen Anne’s and Kent Counties, and perhaps a little of Cecil County. Districts 37 and 36 should be safe districts for Colburn and Pipkin, both Republicans, if they run again.

For purposes of electing District 38’s three delegates, the district would be divided for the first time into three single-member subdistricts. Currently, the district has one two-delegate subdistrict and one single-member subdistrict. District 38B is represented by a Democrat, the veteran Del. Norm Conway, who is chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, and freshman Del. Michael McDermott, a Republican. District 38A is represented by Del. Charles Otto, also a Republican and a freshman.

Under the proposal, both McDermott and Otto would be in District 38A, which should provide for an interesting Republican primary election if both decide to run in 2014. The new subdistrict continues to contain all of Somerset County, and now also includes the southern half of Worcester County. The pairing makes sense, because Somerset and southern Worcester are primarily rural, agricultural areas, which deserve their own representation. (Del. Otto is a farmer.)

DEL. NORM CONWAY

The new District 38B contains much of the Salisbury area, which is urban and suburban. The proposed 38B would appear ideally suited for reelection of Del. Conway, a retired educator, if he chooses to run again. Conway is popular and well-known in the Salisbury area.

The new District 38C would for the first time provide a delegate for the resort area of Ocean City, West Ocean City and Ocean Pines, which is the largest and fastest-growing population center outside Salisbury on the Lower Shore. The economy of that area is oriented toward tourism and the hospitality industry. It’s also a fast-growing retirement area. District 38C would include northern Worcester County, the residential area south of Ocean City, and a portion of Eastern Wicomico County. Sen. Mathias lives in Ocean City, but none of the three currently serving delegates live in the proposed District 38C.

The proposed map preserves District 37A, a minority subdistrict currently represented by Del. Rudy Cane, a Democrat. District 37A includes a significant part of Salisbury, and runs north and west to include parts of Dorchester County.

— JOHN HAYDEN

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