On Nov. 5, the Fort Bend County Commissioners Court voted 3-2 along party lines to approve a map that will likely secure a majority-Democrat court in time. The redistricting map removes the cities of …
On Nov. 5, the Fort Bend County Commissioners Court voted 3-2 along party lines to approve a map that will likely secure a majority-Democrat court in time. The redistricting map removes the cities of Katy and Fulshear from Precinct 3 and places them both in a newly outlined Precinct 1.
“The map changes many things in Fort Bend County and Precinct 3 has been radically remade. I am very disappointed in how the process was carried out and in how many friends and communities are being removed from Precinct 3,” said Precinct 3 Commissioner Andy Meyers, a Republican.
Meyers’s area of responsibility now includes most of the city of Sugar Land as well as portions of Stafford and Missouri City. It had previously included Fulshear, southern Katy and Cinco Ranch. Those cities and Cinco Ranch now belong to Precinct 1 which is represented on the court by Commissioner Vincent Morales, a Republican. Precinct 1 had previously taken up the majority of southern Fort Bend County with Precinct 2 and Precinct 4 taking up smaller areas near Sugar Land and the city of Houston where it extends into the county.
The redistricting map that was adopted was the third proposed by County Judge KP George, a Democrat. George said via a press release that the county had been working on the redistricting process since September and had to decide by Nov. 13. Redistricting is undertaken every 10 years after the U.S. Census Bureau conducts its decennial population survey of the nation. The census was delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic this time around, but eventually showed an increase in Fort Bend’s population by about 40%, the press release said.
George said his final map, which was submitted at about 11 a.m. for commissioners’ consideration, took into account the feedback of dozens of county residents who had provided feedback at public hearings held by the court.
The late submittal of the newly proposed map caused commissioners to recess twice to review the map prior to voting on it.
As a result of the redistricting plan, both Meyers and Morales will be moving their respective offices to new locations. Meyers will be moving to the Fort Bend County Annex at 12550 Emily Court in Sugar Land, about a block north of Dairy Ashford Road. Morales will be moving his offices to the county office at 22333 Grand Corner Drive, near the intersection of the Grand Parkway and FM 1093.
Fulshear Mayor Aaron Groff expressed frustration at what he felt was partisan politics via Facebook but said he looks forward to working with Morales.
“Commissioner Andy Meyers thank you for all you have done for Fulshear and our residents,” Groff said. “Commissioner Vincent Morales welcome to Fulshear; I look forward to working with you for years to come.”
While George asserted that his map was fair and a consensus of the voices heard during the public meetings, not everyone on the court agreed with his assessment, including Morales, though he expressed a commitment to serving his newly-drawn precinct.
“Moving forward, I am honored to be able to represent the (Katy, Fulshear and Simonton) areas of Fort Bend County and I am eager to get to work for the community,” Morales said.
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