Sunday, November 13, 2011

Ward Remapping: The Return of the Independent 6th Ward

The 19th Ward is getting a lot of press attention about the ward remap hearings. In a recent Southtown article it stated that the residents of the 19th ward packed the City of Chicago remapping hearings held at Morgan Park Career Academy. 

The 6th Ward, which also has been a longtime stable community did not get press attention on this matter. At the Remapping hearings held at South Shore International Academy, the residents of the 6th ward came out and voiced their opinion and let Alderman Dick Mell know they did not want to be remapped into the 9th ward. Several African American Alderman looked perplexed as the residents responded to Alderman Mell's question. The question was "were they willing to sacrifice an African American ward versus accepting the Black Caucus proposed remap?". The residents in attendance resoundingly stated YES. This response has brought on responses calling residents of the 6th ward " bougie Negros", selfish and other nasty names.

 Also, at the monthly Park Manor Neighbors Community Council (PMNCC) meeting they made their feelings clear that they would not support any changes to the 6th ward's north and west boundaries.

 The communities of Chesterfield, West Chesterfield, and Roseland Heights might get remapped out of the Sixth Ward under the Black Caucus remap proposal. The residents of West Chesterfield, Chesterfield, and Roseland Heights are not going to stand for this. West Chesterfield and Roseland Heights have joined forces so far to begin a petition drive, with massive community support. On November 15, the Roseland Heights Community Association (RHCA) is going to have a remap forum at Temple of Glory International Church on 311 E. 95th St at 7 p.m. The RHCA president is Clevan Tucker Jr. The respective boundaries for these groups include everything south of 87th to 99th and King Drive from State to Cottage Grove.

 The key points to remember is that if Chesterfield, West Chesterfield, and Roseland Heights are remapped out of the 6th Ward that means that there will be a possibility of losing a tremendous key voter base that was instrumental in the election of Sixth Ward Ald. Roderick T. Sawyer along with key institutions such as Chicago State University, Illinois Service Federal Bank, McDade Classical School, Gillespie Elementary School, Tuley Park, Abbott Park (named after Chicago Defender founder Robert S. Abbott); Harlan High School, Shedd Elementary School, Burnside Elementary School, Seaway National Bank, and also Garrett Popcorn (which will be coming soon to the 6th Ward).

 It appears that residents of the 6th ward have revived the "Independent" title again and are not going to go along to get along. This means that Alderman Beale and State Senator Meeks political careers will hinge on the success of the mall at 115th street. It also appears the Black Caucus is going to have to go back to the drawing board and make some drastic decisions that do not include the 19th and the 6th wards, if they want any version of their map approved.

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