AngloThose persons who identified their race on the census form as White only and not Hispanic.
Assignment unitAny unit of geography that may be used as a building block to draw a redistricting plan. Assignment units available in RedAppl are counties, census tracts, census block groups, census blocks, and VTDs (voting tabulation districts).
Black + HispanicA combined population category that includes all persons who identified their race as Black and all persons who identified themselves as Hispanic. The total is adjusted so that those who indicated they were both Black and Hispanic are not counted twice. The category is frequently examined for redistricting purposes in areas in which Black and Hispanic voters may form political coalitions or vote together as a bloc.
Census block groupA subdivision of a census tract composed of a group of contiguous census blocks with the same first digit of their four-digit census block member. Block groups generally contain between 600 and 3,000 people.
Census dayApril 1, 2010. The date for which census data was collected.
Census Designated Place (CDP)A densely settled, unincorporated area locally identified by a name, such as an unincorporated town, for which the Census Bureau reports population. The boundaries of a census designated place are established by the Census Bureau in cooperation with state and local government officials.
Census tractA unit of census geography delineated by local committees in accordance with census bureau guidelines for the purpose of collecting and presenting decennial census data. Census tracts are made up of block groups. Their boundaries generally follow visible features, though in some circumstances their boundaries may follow governmental unit boundaries or other nonvisible features. In general, census tracts contain between 1,200 and 8,000 people, with an optimum population size of 4,000.
Community of interestA term sometimes used to describe a grouping of people in a geographical area, such as a specific region or neighborhood, who have common political, social, or economic interests.
CompactnessThree basic types of compactness measures are used to analyze the area, perimeter, and population of a district. More than 36 different variations on these compactness measures exist. No single measure of compactness is recognized as the "best" measure. The measures presented in RedAppl and on reports have a range from zero to one, with one indicating perfect compactness for the particular scale. The lower the score, the less compact the district.
ContiguityAdjacency. For redistricting purposes, a district is considered to be contiguous if all parts of the district touch one another at more than a point, so that the entire district is within a continuous boundary. Legal standards governing redistricting for various governmental bodies often require all of the territory in each district to be contiguous.
County election precinctsAlso called voting precincts. Geographic units established by county commissioners courts for the purpose of election administration. The voters in an election precinct usually vote at a single polling place, so the votes cast in the precinct may be counted separately from other precincts.
DistrictViewerA web application for viewing interactive maps of current Texas legislative, congressional, and SBOE districts and public redistricting plans over the Internet. Desktop version available at http://gis1.tlc.state.tx.us. Mobile version available at http://gis1.tlc.state.tx.us/dvrmobile.html.
Fifteenth Amendment to the U.S. ConstitutionThe provision of the U.S. Constitution that prohibits the right to vote from being denied or abridged on account of race.
FragmentationThe division of members of a geographically concentrated group, such as a racial or political group, among different districts for the purpose of minimizing the group's voting strength.
Gerrymander(noun) A district or set of districts with unusual boundaries that is drawn to favor one or more interest groups over others; (verb) To draw a district or set of districts with unusual boundaries that favor one or more interest groups over others.
Minority vote dilutionsThe creation of districts that either (1) divide members of a racial or ethnic minority group among several districts, artificially reducing the group's opportunity to influence elections (see "Fragmentation") or (2) place high percentages of members of a racial or ethnic minority group in one or more districts so that minority voting strength is artificially limited to those districts and is minimized in neighboring districts (see "Packing"). Voter Registration.
OtherThose persons who did not identify themselves on the census form as White only, Black, or Hispanic.
P.L. (Public Law) 105-119The 1997 federal statute that requires the Census Bureau to make publicly available the census data resulting from the actual responses to the census forms and follow-up efforts, without any statistical adjustments to correct for overcounts and undercounts.
PackingCreating a district with an unnecessarily high concentration of a particular group of voters, such as a racial or political group, which tends to result in the election of the group's candidate of choice in any election in that district while diluting the group's voting strength in neighboring districts due to the "wasting" of votes in the packed district.
Population estimatesAn approximation of the population of a geographic unit at a point in the past or present for which an actual population count is not available.
Population projectionsAn approximation of the population of a geographic unit at a point in the future based on specific assumptions regarding future demographic trends in the geographic unit.
PreclearanceApproval under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 of a redistricting plan or other change in state or local election procedures by a special three-judge federal district court in Washington, D.C., or by the U.S. Department of Justice.
Public planA redistricting proposal that has been made public through the legislative process or otherwise publicly released by its author.
ReapportionmentReallocation of a fixed number of seats in a governmental body among established political units. Following each decennial census, the seats in the U.S. House of Representatives are reapportioned among the states. The result is that each state is assigned its number of congressional seats for the next decade. Reapportionment does not redefine district boundaries. The term is sometimes used imprecisely to mean "redistricting."
RedApplThe Texas Legislature's geographic information system (GIS) application developed by the Texas Legislative Council used for redistricting.
RedistrictingThe process of redefining the geographic boundaries of individual election units, such as legislative or congressional districts or county election precincts.
RetrogressionThe term used to describe a reduction in the voting strength of a racial or ethnic group resulting from a redistricting plan or other change in election procedures. Retrogression is the primary test used for evaluating a change in election procedures for preclearance under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
Statistical samplingThe statistical method by which characteristics of a small group are measured and applied to the population as a whole.
Total range of deviationThe range over which the populations of all districts in a redistricting plan deviate from the ideal district population, computed by examining the deviations of the most populous and least populous districts.
Traditional districting principlesA term often used to refer to criteria, such as compactness and contiguity, that have historically been considered in drawing legislative or other districts.
Voting age populationThe number of persons in a geographic unit who are at least 18 years of age. Because some population groups, such as racial or ethnic minorities, tend to be younger on average than the population as a whole, the voting age populations are frequently compared in evaluating the potential voting strength of those groups.
Voting Rights ActThe federal law prohibiting discrimination in voting practices on the basis of race or language group, codified as 42 U.S.C. Section 1973 et seq. The official title of the act is the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Sections 2 and 5 of the act are important for redistricting.
Voting tabulation district (VTD)The census geographic equivalent of a county election precinct, created for the purpose of relating election data to census data. VTDs can differ from actual election precincts because election precincts do not always follow census geography. During the approximation process that creates VTDs, county election precinct boundaries that do not follow census geography are assigned to the nearest census block boundary. http://www.fyi.legis.state.tx.us. Mobile version available at http://gis1.tlc.state.tx.us/wrmmobile.html.