Ward Boundaries to Be Redrawn in 2020
Estimated Ward Population
Ward 1 — 13,763
Ward 2 — 17,035
Ward 3 — 13,916
Ward 4 — 15,784
Ward 5 — 14,493
Total — 74,992
To address an imbalance of population among wards, Broomfield City Council agreed to address the issue in 2020 and setting up a process that sets a schedule for regular review of ward boundaries.
The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that ward populations generally should not exceed a 10 percent disparity between the largest and smallest ward populations, but that up to 10 years is a reasonable frequency for rebalancing — even if population growth is creating an imbalance.
The most recent boundary adjustments were made in April 2015, so Broomfield is not legally obligated to adjust them at this time. Before 2015, changes were done in April 2003 and April 2009.
As of this month, the disparity between the largest, Ward 2, and the smallest , Ward 1, is estimated to be 21.8 percent.
“Clearly we need to, and can do it, but I don’t think we should,” at this time Ward 2 Councilman Mike Shelton said.
He proposed an evaluation process be done on an even-numbered year, in part because one candidate already has filed to run in this year’s city council election,
By pushing this off until 2020, council avoids the appearance of changing boundaries after candidates already have entered this year’s city council race.
“We don’t need that type of perception,” Shelton said.
Ward 4 Councilman Kevin Kreeger agreed it should be done in even years to avoid the appearance of impropriety. He suggested it be set for every four years starting in 2020.
Ward 2 Councilwoman Elizabeth Law-Evans said she didn’t think there was any impropriety in adjusting boundaries before the election since “people can file as early as they want.” Still, she agrees there is no rush to change boundaries now, and was in favor of putting a policy in place so staff can compute numbers ever two years.
Ward boundary changes may be made by an ordinance adopted by city council on second reading, which includes a public hearing, and changes should be made at least 180 days before a regular municipal election, which this year falls on Nov. 5.
An ordinance would be effective seven days after publication.
Jennifer Rios: 303-473-1361, firstname.lastname@example.org or Twitter.com/Jennifer_Rios