WAMU 88.5 : News

Va. Redistricting: Prince William Co. Chair Slams State Plan

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But some local observers say the county's own plan, approved unanimously by the board Monday night, has its own issues.

For his part, Stewart applauds Governor McDonnell's [rejection]9http://wamu.org/news/11/04/19/virginiaredistrictingplanslackconsensus.php) of the General Assembly's state redistricting plan. Assembly members are coming back to the table to work on a revised plan April 25.

Stewart says the senate plan would have split his county five ways, and left open the possibility of non-Prince William residents representing most of the county.

"That would not go over very well with Prince William county residents," Stewart says.

But Rishi Awatramani, with the pro-immigrant group Virginia New Majority, says Stewart and his allies are ignoring the principles of self-governance themselves.

Awatramani says the county's plan splits the community north of Manassas city between three different districts.

That's where the county's largest Latino population is clustered.

"He's disrupting communities," Awatramani says. "He's not allowing people who deserve a united voice to have that united voice."

Awatramani says he believes Prince William's plan is ripe for a legal challenge.

Stewart points out that the plan has support from the local NAACP, as a well as several local minority religious leaders.

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