NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) —Following the state’s decision to cut the size of the Metro Council in half, Nashville is taking the first steps toward understanding what that will look like.
Currently, 40 councilmembers cover Davidson County, with 35 serving districts and five at-large. However, due to a resignation, one of these at-large positions is vacant.
With a fast-growing population, especially in the southeast Districts 31, 32, and 33, some councilmembers said they worry they won’t be able to give neighborhoods their full attention, as they’ll cover a broader area with high, increasing populations.
“Our neighborhoods are pretty large,” said Metro Councilmember At-Large Burkley Allen. “To be able to know all those neighbors, just time-wise, will be difficult, and it’s so important to have those relationships.”
Those in favor of reducing council size said it will increase the team’s efficiency. Allen, however, said she is not sold on this.
“I don’t know that smaller is more efficient,” said Allen. “I think having 40 people increases the likelihood that someone in that group is going to have either the expertise or the interest to pursue some of the things that need to be done.”
On Thursday, March 16, the planning commission is giving an analysis to council members of the criteria used for redistricting and what representing these neighborhoods could mean with a reduced council size.
The meeting starts at 4 p.m. and will be live-streamed.
No action will be taken today to determine the new district numbers or to start drawing a map. The planning department said they do anticipate that action to come next week if they’re not blocked by any legal orders.
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This is a developing story. WKRN News 2 will continue to update this article as new information becomes available.