(KCPW News) The new mapping software for Utahns to draw and submit their own political boundaries during the redistricting process is now available to the public. Political Mapping Toolbox allows anyone to create maps for each type of district, share maps with other users and the public, offer feedback on other maps and make proposals for the Redistricting Committee to consider. Senator Ralph Okerlund says he’s received a number of calls from people eagerly waiting for it to be released.
“It’s user friendly, if they have some time, they’re going to be able to figure out how to do it. And I think it’s going to be enjoyable for them,” he says. “I think this is going to make it a lot more interesting for people to see how the entire system works, and how each line that’s redrawn affects another one and how difficult the process really is.”
Okerlund says it’s extremely important for the public to better understand the process, but it also gives the committee fresh eyes.
“What I suppose is going to happen is that we are going to have quite a few people that are going to take the time to try to do this, I think we’re going to be looking for patterns, where we have a number of people with similar ideas. Those are going to be something that we take a closer look at,” says Okerlund.
The software can be found on the state’s redistricting website, RedistrictUtah.com. The committee will recommend a final map to the full Legislature, which will make a decision this fall.
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