IBJNews

House to take up bill to create redistricting commission

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

The Republican-controlled Indiana House is set to take up legislation that would give a bipartisan commission the duty of drawing maps for the House, Senate and congressional districts – but the proposal is likely to undergo changes.

House Bill 1032 – authored by Rep. Jerry Torr, R-Carmel – would still give the General Assembly final say over redistricting, which occurs every 10 years. But the bill assigns a five-member commission with the job of first drawing the lines.

The Elections and Appointments Committee passed the bill Wednesday – but only after members expressed concerns that are likely to lead to amendments.

The commission would have four members – each one appointed by a leader of a legislative party caucus. That means one appointed by the leaders of the House Republicans, House Democrats, Senate Republicans and Senate Democrats.

The four commission members would then have to agree on a fifth member, who would serve as the chair. If an agreement couldn’t be reached, the chief justice of the Indiana Supreme Court would appoint the final member.

The House passed a similar bill in 2006 but it then failed in the Senate. “It is time to get the idea back out there and move it forward,” said Senate Minority Leader Tim Lanane, D-Anderson.

Several committee members including Reps. John Bartlett, D-Indianapolis, and Kreg Battles, D-Vincennes, said they thought the bill needed revisions before passing on to the House.

“The concept of the bill is great, but it needs a week,” Bartlett said.

Battles said the bill doesn’t require a unanimous vote of the commission to pass the maps; only three members would need to vote yes, which could still give power to one party.

“We have seen abuse by both parties to a certain extent (on the maps) and it would be great to have a unanimous vote,” said Torr. “We are open to suggestions to improve the bill.”

Other organizations including Common Cause and the League of Woman Voters have stepped out in support of the bill.

Julia Vaughn, policy director of Common Cause, said she would want to see Indiana base some of the bill off California’s redistricting committee.

California has 14 members on its committee. Vaughn thinks Indiana should have more commission members so it better “reflects the diversity of Indiana.”

Lawmakers also debated whether to add criteria that would be used to make the appointment.

Battles said that area of the bills needs be “tightened up” before it’s voted on by the full House.

Torr said he is open to the possibility of co-authors and said, “We have plenty of opportunity through this process to change it, and I suspect that there will be changes.”

ADVERTISEMENT

  • Hopefully ...
    ... there is some way to redistrict the state in such a way as to eliminate Andre Carson. Good luck!

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. From the story: "The city of Indianapolis also will consider tax incentives and funding for infrastructure required for the project, according to IEDC." Why would the City need to consider additional tax incentives when Lowe's has already bought the land and reached an agreement with IEDC to bring the jobs? What that tells me is that the City has already pledged the incentives, unofficially, and they just haven't had time to push it through the MDC yet. Either way, subsidizing $10/hour jobs is going to do nothing toward furthering the Mayor's stated goal of attracting middle and upper-middle class residents to Marion County.

  2. Ron Spencer and the entire staff of Theater on the Square embraced IndyFringe when it came to Mass Ave in 2005. TOTS was not only a venue but Ron and his friends created, presented and appeared in shows which embraced the 'spirit of the fringe'. He's weathered all the storms and kept smiling ... bon voyage and thank you.

  3. Not sure how many sushi restaurants are enough, but there are three that I know of in various parts of downtown proper and all are pretty good.

  4. First off, it's "moron," not "moran." 2nd, YOU don't get to vote on someone else's rights and freedoms that are guaranteed by the US Constitution. That's why this is not a state's rights issue...putting something like this to vote by, well, people like you who are quite clearly intellectually challenged isn't necessary since the 14th amendment has already decided the issue. Which is why Indiana's effort is a wasted one and a waste of money...and will be overturned just like this has in every other state.

  5. Rick, how does granting theright to marry to people choosing to marry same-sex partners harm the lives of those who choose not to? I cannot for the life of me see any harm to people who choose not to marry someone of the same sex. We understand your choice to take the parts of the bible literally in your life. That is fine but why force your religious beliefs on others? I'm hoping the judges do the right thing and declare the ban unconstitutional so all citizens of Wisconsin and Indiana have the same marriage rights and that those who chose someone of the same sex do not have less rights than others.

ADVERTISEMENT