PORT and County commissions

County official proposes redistricting


In a year that saw discussions of increasing county and port commission seats to five from three, Thurston County Manager Ramiro Chavez introduced a redistricting proposal for the three commissioner districts during the Port of Olympia work session on Mon., Oct. 18. 

The proposal was a part of the government redistricting process that is held every 10 years. It includes a process of changing boundaries so that all districts will have an equal number of people. “Hopefully, we can balance the population; that’s the main objective,” Chavez explained. He also shared that the redistricting process will not affect incumbent officials. 

Redistricting proposal 

Based on the 2020 census data, the county’s population is at 294,781. To ensure that each district would have an equal number of voters, the county proposed to move 5,576 people from District 2 and redistribute them between District 1 and 3. 

To have an equal number of people for each district, the staff explained that 3,745 people needed to move to District 1, and 1,831 people needed to move to District 3 which will give each district a population of 98,260 people. 

The staff shared that the first recommendation is to shift precincts 80, 307, 308, 309, 310, 311, 316, and 317 from District 2 to District 1 which would move 5,455 people. For the second action, the staff suggested shifting precincts 219 and 243 from District 1 to District 3 which would move 2,722 people.

 A third action was recommended to offset the number of people being moved from District 3. The staff suggested to shift precincts 67 and 412 from District 3 to District 1 which would move 817 people. 

As a result, District 1 would have 98,065, District 2 will have 98, 382, and District 3 would have 98,334 people. Based on the redistricting process, each district would have 33 percent of the entire county’s population. 

In the discussion, Port Commissioner Bill McGregor thanked the county staff for their work. “It was interesting to see how the pieces fit together and how you make sure you’re not splitting precincts or you’re not causing any issues in trying to align the population,” McGregor said. 

Ballot measure to add commissioners to be discussed

Previously, the Port of Olympia planned to expand the number of their board membership from three to five. However, the county recommended the Port wait for the results of the 2020 census data before they approve a ballot measure. 

Chavez shared that the county commissioners agreed to hold a meeting for the approval of a public hearing for Tue., Nov. 9. 


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  • PaulTheOak

    When did the County Commissioners discuss increasing to 5 Commissioners? News to me...

    Friday, October 22, 2021 Report this