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Voters deserve more input on districts

The process of redrawing Alabama State Senate and Alabama House districts has created a number of argumments between members of the Legislature.

Add one more to the mix.

The committee that was appointed to shift the lines was in Selma this week to gain input from voters on their ideas and concerns.

The public hearings have been productive to a point, as people have had a chance to sit down and discuss potential changes with their representatives and members of the committee.

Person to person communication is extremely important, no one can argue against that.

But, to a point, the meetings have been like discussing the final outcome of a cake before the recipe has even been established.

During Tuesday’s meeting, Sen. Hank Sanders and others in the audience agreed it is difficult for residents of impacted areas to give adequete input when they haven’t seen the final product.  Sanders said, “Whenever you are talking in the abstract, it really doesn’t mean anything.

“Whenever you’ve got something specific to react to, it just means a lot more. I hope that once ya’ll develop a tentative plan, you will come back around so people can react to it.”

It’s only fair that people whose districts will shift have a chance to voice their opinions before the districts are approved.

Senators and Representatives are placed in office to serve as an extended voice for the people they serve.

Already, some have argued it would be too time-consuming and too difficult to hold a second wave of public hearings once proposed district lines have been established.

Would it be difficult? Yes..

Would it be time consuming? Yes,, but, it would also be a part of their job description.

The public deserves the chance to react to any changes that could come their way.

Hopefully, they will be afforded that opportunity.