As the redistricting pen turns
Since we are in the season of speculation about legislative redistricting, and that redistricting will impact the way we vote next year, there seems to be some indication that Jefferson County is in serious play, and there is a possibility that White Pine, Baneberry, and Chestnut Hill could move out of Rep. Frank Niceley’s (R-Strawberry Plains) 17th District, and into Freshman Republican Jeremy Faison’s (R-Cosby) District.
While there is still little that can be said with certainty about what the final legislative map will look like, several sources close to the situation on Capitol Hill in Nashville have confirmed to The Examiner that East Tennessee could see some significant changes in legislative representation-which will likely include changes in State Senate representation, with Upper East Tennessee in a position to gain a Senate seat and Memphis poised to lose one. In the Tennessee House of Representatives, the seemingly prevailing view is that changes in population in Greene County will put the entire county under one House member, presumably Representative David Hawk (R-Greeneville) would run for that seat. Making Greene County a single district would cut into freshman Rep. Jeremy Faison’s (R-Cosby) district. How would that be resolved? Likely, we are told, by moving into eastern Jefferson County-in a move that would change this writer’s legislative representation, Faison seems likely to pick up White Pine, Baneberry, and Chesnut Hill, while Representative Frank Niceley (R-Strawberry Plains), appears as though he may pick up more of Knox County or part of Sevier.
Campfield told The Examiner that many in the Senate aren’t yet sure just what the new districts will look like. “We are supposed to be having a Senate Republican Caucus retreat very soon, and at that gathering, we are being told that we will come to know the future of our districts and what kind of situation we’ll be dealing with at the next election.” Campfield did confirm that the redistricting rumor mill is spinning regarding Senate Democratic Leader Jim Kyle (D-Memphis). “Obviously, we don’t know for sure yet, but Kyle looks like he may be put in a position where he ends up in the same district as another Democrat,” Campfield said.