What’s happening?

U.S. District Judge Lydia Kay Griggsby has ruled that Baltimore County must redraw its map for county council districts, following a request for an injunction by the Baltimore County Branch of the NAACP,  among others, reports John Lee for WYPR. 

What was wrong with the map? 

Opponents noted that the map violates the Voting Rights Act since it only had one Black majority district in a county that’s 30% African American. They say Black voters are packed into the fourth district, which includes Owings Mills and has a population of more than 70% Black residents. According to opponents, some of these voters can be drawn into another district to create a second African American majority. 

Currently, six of the seven council members are white. 

Anything else I should know? 

Council members must create a new map by March 8 that either includes two Black-majority districts or an additional district that lets Black voters “elect a representative of their choice,” according to Judge Griggsby. Baltimore County residents will vote on council candidates on June 28. 

You can read more here.