My Turn: Time to change how Wilmington council members are elect - WECT, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

My Turn: Time to change how Wilmington council members are elected

(Source: WECT) (Source: WECT)

The city of Wilmington is growing at a pretty good clip.  And not everyone is happy about that. There's a very serious discussion going on right now about how much growth is too much.  And with the increasing population comes more scrutiny about who is in power and who is making the decisions that impact all of us.

Well, I think it's time for Wilmington to consider moving to a form of representation by districts versus the current at-large representation model.  The goal would be to try to avoid a situation where one part of town is over-represented, while another part of the city has no representation at all.

Currently, we have two members of council in the downtown area living near each other.  That gives the downtown area a higher percentage of representation.  Now, I’m not insinuating that these council members are ganging up to give downtown an unfair advantage.  In fact, I’m thinking now might be a good time to tackle this before it gets broken because one more elected to council from that area would make it problematic.  

There is no perfect model, I get that.  But considering that Wilmington is the only large city in the state with all at-large members, I'm guessing we’re a bit behind the times on this.   

That's my turn. Now it's your turn. To comment on this segment, or anything else, email me at

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Emailed comments from viewers:

I'm sure you're familiar with the saying, "If it ain't broke, don't  fix it!"   You say Wilmington is the only large city in NC that has only at-large members, and maybe it's time Wilmington joined the parade (or something like that).  Well, could it be true that Wilmington is actually leading that parade?
I can't say the current system is working perfectly, but you don't cite any instances where it has failed or caused a major problem.  Considering the 'gerrymandering' that goes with drawing districts throughout the state, can you imagine the battles that will need to be fought to get agreement on district boundaries within the city?
I usually agree with the points you make, but this one seems to be a solution looking for a problem.


I completely agree with you regarding the at large representation on city council. I too would love to see district representation, and appreciate you putting the idea on the air. This might be an idea that one of the reporters at WECT could take to the streets for more opinions.

Thank you for always giving the viewers food for thought!


I am in agreement with you that we ALL should be represented.  When we were annexed into the city, without my permission, we have not been represented to my knowledge.  So yes we do need districts and no Realtors, big business owners, and recently relocated folks with no business deciding for me, whom has been here since birth!

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