UDWI REMC passes resolution for redistricting

Tuesday, June 25, 2024

According to a press release issued by UDWI REMC, “The Utilities District of Western Indiana REMC Board of Directors passed a resolution to redefine districts in its service territory during its June board meeting.

Districts and their associated board seats are mandated by the cooperative’s bylaws to give members local representation on the UDWI Board of Directors. Also mandated, is a periodic review of the districts and the number of members represented in each to determine if there is a need for any changes.

The last review was conducted in 2018 and no changes were made that year. The current bylaws state that this redistricting review should take place every six years and within 90 days of the last annual meeting, which was held in April 2024.

This year’s review found that the number of UDWI members in each district varied greatly and were not evenly distributed. This is due to fluctuations in population and new or changing developments in housing. In addition, the current district boundaries often divide townships resulting in two directors representing areas that are traditionally served in whole by other services such as water, sewer as well as police and fire departments.

Historically, Districts have been based on UDWI’s internal power map grid, which is not publicly available and can cause confusion on meter locations and the way districts are defined. Now, with updated CIS/GIS technology there is more data available, allowing UDWI to use existing boundaries such as county and township lines.

UDWI serves around 16,000 members across its territory and the current eight districts range from the least populated district with 1,600 members to the most populated district with nearly 2,400 members. The updated districts will balance the number of members; seven districts will now each represent about 2,300 members each and greatly balances the representation across the service territory.

“Our board studied the data over the past couple of months and have determined that the current distribution of our members supports this redistricting, which hasn’t been updated since 2008,” said Board of Directors President Edward Cullison. “We also know that aligning districts along townships lines will help the UDWI staff members working with the public and providing service to our members.”

The new boundary lines will allow members to easily identify their board member and help operations and customer service staff to easily identify specific areas of each district when working with those members requesting information or additional services. This latest redistricting will not affect the election cycle for new directors, and UDWI members will continue to have the opportunity to vote for board member candidates across all districts during the annual meeting process.

The updated Board of Directors and updated district maps can be found on the cooperative website at udwi.com.

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