Feb 25, 2010 — Where should prisoners be counted? Right now, inmates in New York prisons are counted IN prison - rather than in their hometowns. Critics call the practice "prison-based gerrymandering," and New York lawmakers are considering whether to end it this year. At an event in New York City Hall last month, Reverend Al Sharpton helped launch a campaign to change the inmate count. "I think that this is the voters rights and civil rights issue of this year in the state of New York," said Sharpton. But others think the mostly Upstate communities that host prisons deserve the boost in political power that comes with the count of inmates. Lawmakers need to settle the issue before political redistricting efforts get underway next year. In a collaboration between WNYC in New York City and North Country Public Radio, we bring you both sides of the issue. Here's the view from Downstate, from reporter Beth Fertig from WNYC.