The Census Bureau has released the detailed population counts used to draw new legislative districts. Indiana’s maps should follow in a few weeks.
43 Indiana counties gained population since the last census 10 years ago — 49 lost people. The five fastest-growing counties are all Indianapolis suburbs, with Indy itself 10th. Rural Indiana declined, especially in western Indiana.
House Elections Chairman Tim Wesco (R-Osceola) says that’ll mean some already far-flung legislative districts will have to get bigger to keep the populations equal, while fast-growing central Indiana gains additional districts. He says the map of who represents you at the statehouse and in Washington is likely to look dramatically different as a result.
Hamilton County was again Indiana’s fastest growing, increasing by 27-percent. Boone and Hendricks jumped more than 20-percent as well. The explosive growth surrounding Indy may shrink the congressional districts now held by Republicans Victoria Spartz and Jim Baird, while the more rural districts of Republicans Greg Pence in eastern Indiana and Larry Bucshon in the southwest are likely to get a new look. And Wesco notes the changes required to even out those districts will have a domino effect on others.
Wesco expects the legislature to reconvene and hold hearings on proposed new maps in mid-September.