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Ada County adds dozens of voting precincts, redraws boundaries

The new precinct map follows legislative redistricting, and is based on updated population numbers from the 2020 census. It will be in effect for May's primary.

BOISE, Idaho — Now that Idaho's legislative redistricting plan is in place, counties are rolling out new precinct maps to reflect changes in population.

Ada County Elections on Wednesday announced that it has added 46 precincts in Idaho's most-populous county, bringing the total to 197 precincts countywide. The changes will affect most voters in Ada County for the May 17 Idaho Primary Election, and will be in place for the next decade.

This is the result of a process that takes place every ten years -- most recently, following the 2020 census. The Idaho Commission on Reapportionment, also known as the "redistricting commission," establishes new congressional and legislative district boundaries. Based on those districts, counties define their voting precincts, which determine where people vote and how many people vote in the same location.

Ada County Elections said the county's median precinct size had swelled to 2,125 voters per precinct. The statewide median is 1,031.

The 46 precincts added this year will balance the number of voters in each precinct to about 1,500 voters. A spokesperson for Ada County Elections said the changes will minimize crowds and wait times at the polls.

Specific polling locations have not been finalized. Ada County Elections is still working to determine those locations, and is looking to hire hundreds of additional poll workers to staff the precincts.

The elections office will notify all registered voters by mail with the updated precinct and polling location information near the end of April. The new precinct maps are now available to view on the Ada County website.

Ada County Elections held a public forum in January to solicit feedback on the precinct boundary changes. Ada County voting precinct boundaries were approved by the Board of County Commissioners on Tuesday, Feb. 8, in an open business meeting.

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