District Based Representation - 9 Districts
The first potential alternative is called a single-member district based system. Lowell’s current voting system is “at-large,” meaning that each councilor is elected by everyone who votes in the City. Under the District option, the City would be divided into nine districts or wards, and each district would elect one of the nine members of the City Council. Therefore, within each district people would be competing for only one seat. At least two of the districts would be drawn to be “majority-minority” (defined as a district where Asian-Americans and Hispanics/Latinos comprise a majority of the citizen voting age population).
For School Committee elections, the nine districts would be divided into three groups, and each of the three combined, larger districts would then elect two of the six School Committee members. At least one of the combined School Committee districts would be majority-minority.
The exact line drawing of districts is not yet available. If this option is selected, district lines will be drawn by an independent expert, who will also take into account the 2020 census data. However, districts must be roughly proportional in population size, regularly shaped, and take into consideration traditional boundaries, which includes neighborhoods.