The joint subcommittee hearing was the third of a series of redistricting hearings held throughout South Texas to hear public testimony on the upcoming redistricting process. Public hearings were also held in Laredo and McAllen.
The Texas Legislature is required to redistrict congressional, state senate and house districts in the first regular session following publication of the United States decennial census. Actual block-level census numbers are expected early next year. The 82nd Regular Session begins January 11, 2011.
“I am committed to fighting to maintain the integrity of House District 35 and protecting my constituents from any attempts to redraw the district in such a way that would dilute their voting strength,” Representative Gonzalez Toureilles said.
Representative Gonzalez Toureilles stressed the need to reconcile efforts to redraw legislative boundaries to accommodate population growth and shifts with the need to maintain cohesive, compact districts comprised of communities with the same challenges and goals.
“There have been previous attempts at gerrymandering certain state legislative districts for political purposes,” Representative Gonzalez Toureilles said. “The communities of my rural district share many of the same values and socio-economic challenges. It is vital that this sense of community and shared concerns and priorities be maintained.”