The ability to Save plans in MyDistrictBuilder has been activated. Currently, you can only Save in DOJ (Department of Justice) format. The Open function is also active. When Saving and Opening, the file extension will appear as “.doj”. It is recommended that you Save your work regularly.
With the 2010 Census data already available in MyDistrictBuilder, and samples of the American Community Survey data available, users can certainly begin building redistricting plans now.
DOJ format is what the Legislature will use to submit plans for the State House, State Senate and congressional districts to the U.S. Department of Justice. This format is generally the most common language between redistricting applications.
In addition to Save and Open, there are some changes to the data grid at the bottom of MyDistrictBuilder.
Looking to the left side of the data grid, you can now Save the data grid in CSV (comma separated value) format. Once you’ve saved the CSV file to your computer, you can open the file in Excel or most other spreadsheet applications.
Again, looking to the left of the data grid, as you are building districts, you will see a constantly updated number underneath the phrase “Working Pop Dev”. This number, working population deviation, symbolizes the total deviation from the ideal population for those districts that you have worked on thus far. Use this as an early warning system that you may need to adjust your population deviations early in the building process, rather than waiting till the end.
For congressional districts, your ideal deviation is one (1) person, over or under, from the ideal population. For State House and State Senate districts, you have a little more freedom than one person, but it is still recommended that you not deviate by more than 1,500 people below or above the ideal populations for State House districts and 4,500 people below or above for State Senate districts. Track the “Pop Dev” column in the data grid to keep tabs on the deviations of each individual district you create.