City Council to focus on re-districting

Members of the Biloxi City Council will hold their first meeting this morning to discuss the re-drawing of ward lines for the 2013 municipal elections.

The meeting will begin at 10:30 at Biloxi City Hall and is open to the public.

The lines for the city’s seven wards are being re-drawn to reflect dramatic population shifts since Census 2000, and, more significantly, since Hurricane Katrina. The number of residents in east Biloxi, particularly in the Point Cadet area, has not rebounded since being decimated by Katrina, meaning ward lines may shift westward and northward in order to better balance the number of residents in each ward. The new ward lines also must be approved by the U.S. Department of Justice.

Representatives of the Stennis Institute of Government at Mississippi State University are expected to be on hand to brief councilmembers

Current ward lines: To see the population breakdown and map for the current ward lines, based on Census 2000 data, click here.

City Council meeting: To see the agendas for the 10:30 and 1:30 council meetings, click here.

News and notes

Make plans: For a preview of the special events planned for the month of February, click here, and for a look at the lineup of Mardi Gras festivities, click here.

Gallery affair: Gallery 782, the downtown Biloxi art co-op, will extend its hours this Friday for “After Dinner Art and Coffee.” The gallery will be open from 10:00 a.m. until 8 p.m. Refreshments will be served at the free event. For more information call 228-436-7782 or go Gallery 782 is at 782 Water St., immediately north of Mary Mahoney’s Old French House Restaurant.

Walking parade registration: Digital registration forms are now available for the Children’s Walking Parade, which takes place on Lundi Gras, Monday, Feb. 20, in downtown Biloxi. To see the registration form, which includes theme info, click here.

Party at the Point: A huge three-day entertainment extravaganza is in the works for Point Cadet. The Mississippi Gulf Coast Music, Arts Crafts and Seafood Festival, dubbed “Party at the Point,” will feature three days of nationally recognized entertainment and arts and crafts vendors. The event is planning for May 25-27. For background info, click here.