The most recent round of redistricting put the county in a single state senate and Kansas State Board of Education district, but divided the area into three state representative districts.
TOPEKA—Every 10 years, legislature redraws district lines to accurately represent the population distribution in the state.
When the state legislature failed to complete the process of redistricting during the last session, three federal judges stepped in, producing new senate, house, board of education and congressional districts, which were released June 7.
The resulting district maps produced 25 house districts with no incumbent, 21 with two incumbents, and two with three incumbents – one located in the city of Topeka, the other is divided between Coffey, Lyon and Osage counties.
“It’s unfortunate we didn’t get our job done,” said State Representative Peggy Mast. “This is what we have to deal with because the courts made the decision. We’re accepting what we have and realizing we need to make the most of it.”
Mast is an eight-term incumbent in the 76th district, serving since 1997. Her district now shares real estate with State Representative Willie Prescott, who served two terms in the 59th district, and State Representative Bill Otto, a four-term legislator in the ninth district.
Prescott represented all of Osage County in the 59th district, but takes a third of the county’s population into the new 76th district, which by population is 38 percent of Coffey County, 36 percent Lyon County and just 25 percent Osage County.
For the complete story, subscribe to the print or online
edition of The Osage County Herald-Chronicle at www.och-c.com/subscribe.html.