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House of Representatives
Session of 2017 - 2018 Regular Session


Posted: February 22, 2017 12:54 PM
From: Representative Mary Jo Daley
To: All House members
Subject: Ensuring Openness and Fairness in Redistricting
In the near future, I plan to reintroduce legislation, formerly House Bill 878, which would require openness and fairness in the redistricting process.

My legislation would allow any Pennsylvania resident to submit reapportionment plans for legislative districts and would require the Reapportionment Commission to consider these plans. To facilitate these efforts, the Commission would be required to make software and demographic data available to the public for use in developing such plans.

The bill would also require the Reapportionment Commission to:
  • Hold five public hearings to solicit public testimony from as many residents as possible before it issues a preliminary plan and again before issuing a final plan.
  • Create a website that provides access to the data used to formulate reapportionment plans, written communication between the Commission and other people, preliminary and final plans, citizen plans, notices of Commission hearings and meetings, hearing transcripts and meeting minutes.
  • Comply with the Sunshine Act and the Right-to-Know Law.
As you may recall, Pennsylvania drew national attention for its partisan redistricting efforts after the 2010 Census. A 2012 court challenge by a private citizen – who drew her own reapportionment maps to show districts could be drawn in a nonpartisan way – led the state Supreme Court to reject the Commission’s original plan. New redistricting maps were approved by the Court in 2013.

Please join me in bringing more transparency to and encouraging citizen participation in the redistricting process.

View Attachment

Introduced as HB924