Bethlehem Split-up for Districting is unacceptable
As a resident of Bethlehem and Lehigh County, I object to the redistricting proposal on several grounds. 1. I support the PA state constitution's stance that cities should not be split up during redistricting unless absolutely necessary. I live in Bethlehem, which, to my knowledge, has not been split up into separate Senate districts in the 41 years that I have lived here. It is not necessary to split up the existing current 18th Senatorial district. 2. I object to splitting up Bethlehem into multiple districts, because of the impact it has upon the school district in which I live and negative tax change it would create for me as a resident of west Bethlehem and the Bethlehem Area School District. The proposal moves me into a separate school district, which would adversely change my school taxes. It would also lump my part of Bethlehem into other school district communities that I have not interest in nor have any connection with. I have voted consistently for 43 years, including votes for school board in my city of Bethlehem. Changing districting realigns me away from those local school board officials, who make decisions in this area. If students in my area would be forced to attend a different school district, it would change my property values, which are based on a good school district, rather than a distressed school district. 3. The Lehigh Valley, the 3rd larges MSA (market statistical area) in PA, is being unfairly and negatively impacted by diluting the ethnicity of the population within the proposed districts. As a Lehigh Valley resident, I expect fair representation. Although Allentown is a majority Latino community, the proposal does not provide any majority ethnic districts. 4. The proposed redistricting plan for the state does not provide a consistent balance of Democratic and Republican constituents, to make competitive districts. This unfairly allows candidates to be elected without any concern for representing constituents in a balanced way. A competitive election with a near 50/50 mix of Republicans and Democrats should have also been a goal. The proposal failed on this measurement.