All five members of the Cook County Board of Commissioners could stand for election on Election Day this fall. The rationale comes at least in part from the results of the 2020 census.
This was the report of Auditor Braidy Powers to a committee of the January 18 full session, attended by all five members of the District Executive Committee and other District staff.
Due to the standard election process, the commissioners from Districts 1, 3, and 5 were all up for election in 2022, regardless of redistribution. These are Commissioners Bob Svaleson, Dave Mills and Ginny Storlie respectively.
District 2 Commissioner Stacey Hawkins and District 4 Commissioner Ann Sullivan were elected in 2020. According to the standard election calendar, their county board seats would not come up for re-election until 2024. However, the re-election process is likely to earn both seats on the district board up for election in 2022, Powers said in a recent interview with WTIP’s Joe Friedrichs. District 2’s seat on the board is essentially guaranteed to stand for election due to redistricting requirements, Powers said.
Redistribution is the process of redefining the boundaries of electoral districts after the ten-year census has ended. The purpose of redistricting is to ensure that people are evenly represented in each district in Cook County, Powers said.
Cook County’s population grew nearly 8 percent during the last census. The population of the county is 5,600 as of the 2020 census. This means that the average size of the district in relation to the number of inhabitants is around 1,120 people. The population of the districts must not differ by more than 10 percent from the average of all districts in the county, unless the result, according to Powers, forces a constituency to be split up. If that’s the case, the district will need to be redrawn, as will likely be the case for District 2 this year, he added.
Although other elected officials in Cook County follow the same district map, such as the ISD 166 School Board, the redistribution will not force other elected posts to expedite their election process, Powers said.
Click here for a full breakdown of the different scenarios and reasons why the districts are likely to be redrawn this year.
Listen to the audio shared below to hear the full interview with WTIP and Auditor Powers.