The Montgomery Countil Councilhas approved a resolution that makes substantial changes in the boundaries of its five councilmanic districts, based on significant population shifts in the past decade.
The plan already has irritated an umbrella group of civic associations whose leaders say that no County Council member will have to live in the so-called "upcounty" area, and that the new plan separates neighborhoods "with common interests" and places them in three different elective jurisdictions.
Proponents of the plan, drawn up by the bipartisan Redistricting Commission, say it accurately reflects residential shifts in the county. Said council member David Scull: "I'm satisfied that the commission did a very thorough and fair job. . . . I'm prepared to vote for it."
The final vote on the plan was 5-0 in favor, with only one abstention. But two members of the council, Scott Fosler and Rose Crenca, said the citizens' plan deserves further study.
Robert Sher, spokesman for the Potomac Association of Presidents, the umbrella group of associations, said his group wants an upcounty district with a southern border that would be much farther north than the current plan. Instead, the commission rejected the idea and effectively left the second district's southern border unchanged.
Currently, the second district encompasses the northern sections of the county, but the commission placed the northeastern half of it into an expanded fourth district.
Each of the five districts is represented by a council member and the other two members run for election at large, but county residents vote on all seven members.