Cohasset redistrictings, adds third ward following census data
Watch the inhabitants of Cohasset, your voting booth could change for the next election.
Following the data collected during the 2020 census, Cohasset will carry out a redistricting and the addition of a third district.
The city was forced to relocate due to federal regulations regarding precinct sizes and the city’s growing population.
“Due to the federal census, we are over 8,000 residents,” said former city clerk Carol St. Pierre. “You are not allowed to have more than 4,000 residents in a neighborhood.”
The population of Cohasset increased by 11.1% during the last census, from 7,542 in 2010 to 8,381 in 2020.
“This is based on our city’s census, and the state controls it,” said acting city clerk Kim Roy, who took over from St. Pierre earlier this month. “We are going from two constituencies to three. We will let everyone in town know if they are part of the new Ward 3 or the reconfigured Ward 2.
“It’s a bit of a change, but not too big,” she added.
Each of the three wedges will be nearly equal in size. Ward 1, which will remain relatively unchanged, is the smallest with 2,711 inhabitants. Ward 2 is home to 2,859 residents and the new Ward 3 is home to 2,811 residents.
Enclosure 1 will continue to cover the northern part of Cohasset, while Enclosure 2 will cover the central and southern parts of the town, and much of the area adjoining Hingham.
The new district 3 will cover a large part of the area surrounding the port.
Due to the federal census, we are over 8,000 residents. You are not allowed to have more than 4,000 inhabitants in a constituency.
“Precinct 3 will basically be the majority of South Main Street, from South Main to 3A, then South Main to the coast,” explained Jason Federico of Cohasset’s public works department.
Beech Street will serve as the dividing line between Wards 1 and 3.
Cohasset received state approval on the fairness of the clipping, Roy said.
“It was blessed by the Commonwealth and the City Attorney,” she said.
At this time, Cohasset officials have not indicated that a change in voting location is forthcoming, although some options are being considered.
The municipality intends to continue to welcome all registered voters of Cohasset at the town hall during the elections.
“There will be three constituencies at the polling place, so it will be the same number of voters, just another constituency,” St. Pierre said.
Federico and the DPW, however, are currently ensuring that the additional furniture required for a third ward could still fit in City Hall.
“We were setting up the voting booths at City Hall,” Federico said.
He added that the city is going through the same process at the Senior Center on Sohier Street.
“If the renovation of City Hall happens, we might consider having an election at the Senior Center,” he said.
Cohasset residents will be notified by the city if they will be affected by the changes, and all residents will be notified of any change in voting location.
The proposed map is not yet official, as the city is still awaiting state approval.
Redistricting at the state level
District change is also happening at the state level, as the Commonwealth adjusts to its new population and changing densities.
Last week, the Massachusetts House of Representatives passed legislation, the General Court Representative Districts Act (H 4217,) that established new political boundaries for the House’s 160 districts. Plymouth’s Third District, represented by State Representative Joan Meschino (D-Hull), will be made up of the towns of Hingham, Hull and Cohasset. The district now includes all of Hingham’s wards. North Scituate Ward 3 will be part of Fourth Plymouth District.
Meschino commented on the changes, expressing his enthusiasm for the fairness of the changes.
“Every decade, the redistricting process provides an opportunity to redefine individual and community representation at the local, state and federal levels,” Rep. Meschino (D-Hull) said. “While the results of this year’s process mean that I will no longer have the honor of representing the residents of North Scituate Ward, I appreciate the Committee’s efforts to keep our towns and villages together, and I look forward to represent the new neighborhood of Hingham.”