For John, BLUF: When it comers to voting, I believe silence is consent. You don't vote because you are not willing to play. Nothing to see here; just move along.
Here is a long analysis by Lowell Resident Ted Siefer, in Commonwealth Magazine.
The thesis from Mr Siefer is "Voting system concentrates power in heavily white Belvidere."
It is not just bad analysis, it is rubbish.
The key to a voting system is—wait for it—voting.
Let's look at active voters (given that Wards and Precincts are of the same size, as per the law).
|PRECINCT 1||PRECINCT 2||PRECINCT 3|
That is a total of 42148 active voters out of 61323 registered voters.
The maximum number of voters is Ward 1, Precinct 2, at 2215.
The minimum number of voters is Ward 2, Precinct 1, at 731.
That makes a difference of 1484. While it isn't a real "statistic", of the 33 precincts, 26 had fewer voters than the difference, the difference, between the top voting precinct and the bottom.
So, Mr Siefer should have focused, not on why The Belvidere elects City Councilors, but why other precincts are not voting.
For Ward 1, 82% of the registered voters bothered to vote (88% if one just looks at Precincts 2 and 3). Only three other Wards have voting percentages over 70%.
The question is, what do we do to encourage voters in Ward 2, Precinct 1 to vote. Or Ward 7.
For statistics geeks, the average is 1277 and the Standard Deviation is 337.
The other side of this is that gimmicks to give more voting power to other Precincts just dilutes my vote. And that isn't right.
Regards — Cliff