DOJ and City of West Monroe enter proposed consent decree over voting rights lawsuit

Local Politics

MONROE, La. — The Justice Department has entered into a proposed consent decree to settle a voting rights lawsuit with West Monroe that challenges the current at-large method of electing the Board of Alderman.

According to the DOJ, the city of West Monroe will change the at-large method to comply with the Voting Rights Act. The current method of electing, according to the DOJ, results in Black citizens having less opportunity than their white counterparts to take part in the political process and to elect candidates of their choice.

Nearly 30% of West Monroe is made up of Black residents, yet no Black candidate has ever been elected to the West Monroe Board of Alderman, according to the DOJ.

Under the consent decree, West Monroe will stop using the at-large method of electing the five member of the Board of Alderman. In the next municipal election, three members of the Board of Alderman will be elected from single-member districts and only two members will be elected at-large.

That election is scheduled for March 26, 2022.

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