Council focuses on fighting Census resultsMar 18th, 2011 | By Terri Sercovich | Category: News
“We’re in an uphill battle. We know that going in.”
-Craig Taffaro, Parish President
Parish officials are asking how can the St. Bernard Parish Registrar of Voters have 24,111 register voters on the books, while the 2010 census has the parish population recorded at 35,897? These numbers leave only 11,786 to fit every child and unregistered voter in the parish, a number too small for the council and parish president.
“Because of the dynamic nature of the entire region, we believe a recount is in order,” said Parish President Craig Taffaro at Tuesday’s council meeting. He reported that both Jefferson and Orleans Parishes are disputing their census results and that the leaders in these parishes and others are mounting a united plan to try to get a recount.
“We have not engaged a firm at this point,” said Taffaro. “Once we know who will join in, we’ll go in as a group.”
Taffaro said at this point it has not been decided on whether the parishes will ask for a recount, which the parishes would have to pay for, or if they will file suit with an injunction.
In the case of an injunction, the parish would have to identify which part of the census was invalid, for example, if people had not received the census forms.
The council chimed in with several counts to show the population is more, such as school registration and voter registration.
“They either have to wash our rolls or fix the census,” said Councilman George Cavignac, District B.
Time is against St. Bernard Parish.
Redistricting will be addressed using the current numbers, a fact that Councilman Fred Everhardt Jr., District E, pointed out will hurt the parish’s representation in Baton Rouge.
“Unfortunately, the census bureau is dealing with this nationwide,” said Taffaro. “We’re in an uphill battle. We know that going in.”