GOOCHLAND, Va. (WRIC) — Goochland’s new voting districts were adopted by the county’s board of supervisors last month, a move that will bring changes for some residents.
The revised map will become effective on April 15, but the county’s board of supervisors and school board members will represent the districts they were elected to until new elections in 2023. According to the county, this will also apply to the residents who were appointed as representatives to committees and boards.
The voting districts in Goochland and across the commonwealth changed this year after the Virginia Supreme Court approved new congressional and state legislative maps that will remain in place for the next decade.
The court was put in charge of the state’s political redistricting, a once-a-decade process of redrawing electoral districts with 2020 Census data.
Goochland’s population grew by over 3,000 from 2010 to 2020. The county’s 4th and 5th voting districts, located in its eastern end, “saw substantial growth” and the population in its 3rd District shrank after the Virginia Department of Corrections closed the James River Correctional Center in 2011, according to the county.
A new state law changed the way incarcerated people are counted for redistricting, making them residents of where they lived before going to prison.
This required Goochland’s 3rd District to gain 1,231 residents during the redistricting process. The 4th District had to shift 1,009 residents and its “western boundary moved east considerably,” county documents show. Voters can check the changes the districts had to undergo online.
Localities have been working on their redistricting plans for months, with some approving maps and others still going through public hearings. Goochland shared its proposal online last December, held seven community meetings and took public comment through Feb. 1 before the new districts were adopted on March 15.
Registered voters in Goochland are expected to get information on the new districts from the county’s general registrar by June 6. The notice will include details about the voters’ local, state and federal election districts and the polling places located in them.
Those who don’t receive a notice by June 6 have been asked to contact Goochland’s Office of the General Registrar at 804-556-5803. For additional details on the county’s elections and voter registration information, residents can visit the registrar’s webpage at www.goochlandva.us/vote.