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Cleveland City Council Begins Redistricting Process with Selection of Consulting Team

May 30, 2024

Cleveland City Council Begins Redistricting Process with Selection of Consulting Team 

Council President Blaine A. Griffin Plans to Have Redistricting Complete by End of 2024  

Cleveland, OH (May 30, 2024) - Cleveland City Council has selected Triad Research Group as the external group to lead and determine recommendations for its upcoming redistricting process. The Triad team is led by Bob Dykes, a long-time data analyst and statistician. He will be joined by Dr. Mark Salling, a prominent demographer and former Cleveland State University Professor of Urban Affairs as well as Kent Whitley, an urban planner, political consultant, and organizer. Mr. Dykes has nearly forty years of research and consulting experience and previously served as Council’s redistricting consultant on three occasions – in 2013 when the Council went from 19 members to 17 members; in 2009 when membership dropped from 21 to 19; and in 1981 when membership dropped from 33 to 21.  

City Council must drop two seats as a result of population loss reported in the 2020 Census, from the current 17 seats down to 15.   

In 2008, Cleveland voters supported a charter amendment that called for the number of wards to be determined by population. The charter amendment mandated that wards be odd-numbered, comprised of approximately 25,000 people, and not exceed a maximum of 25 wards or a minimum of 11 wards. 

The City Charter mandates that City Council complete a redistricting process based on the results of the Decennial Census. Due to delays related to the COVID-19 pandemic, data needed by states and local governments for redistricting from the 2020 Census was not available until August 20211. This delay prevented City Council from undertaking the redistricting process in 2020 – which would have impacted the 2021 municipal elections. City Council leadership is now engaging in the process to ensure potential candidates and residents are aware of the boundaries well before the 2025 municipal elections. 

“Two of our primary goals are to have natural boundaries and keep neighborhoods together. Community involvement will also play a key role in redistricting,” states Council President Blaine Griffin. “We are eager to begin the work now to allow us time to get this right – and deliver maps that accurately reflect the needs of Cleveland’s diverse neighborhoods.” 

Over the summer, Triad Research Group will meet with council members to discuss neighborhoods and natural boundaries. Triad will also conduct research including but not limited to census track reviews and compiling and analyzing GIS data to help draw boundaries. Potential maps will then be shared with community members in advance of current members taking a vote on the map. Additional details about the community involvement process and opportunities for resident feedback will be shared in the near future. A vote is expected by the end of the 2024 calendar year. 

The filing deadline for potential candidates for 2025 municipal elections is June 11, 2025. The primary election for wards with more than two candidates is scheduled for September 9, 2025. The municipal general election is scheduled for November 4, 2025.