January 22, 2010





SENATE BILL No. 136

_____


DIGEST OF SB 136 (Updated January 19, 2010 6:40 pm - DI 102)



Citations Affected: IC 2-5.5.

Synopsis: Redistricting study committee. Establishes the redistricting study committee. Requires the committee to: (1) study the topic of redistricting and make recommendations on ways to improve the redistricting process; (2) study proposals to amend the Constitution of the State of Indiana to establish an independent commission to draw legislative and congressional district boundaries, beginning with the 2021 redistricting; (3) examine the successes and failures of redistricting commissions in other states and analyze the results of the 2010 election in Indiana and other states to make recommendations to the general assembly; and (4) consider certain standards for drawing legislative and congressional districts.

Effective: July 1, 2010.





Landske, Lawson C, Charbonneau, Miller




    January 5, 2010, read first time and referred to Committee on Elections.
    January 21, 2010, amended, reported favorably _ Do Pass.






January 22, 2010

Second Regular Session 116th General Assembly (2010)


PRINTING CODE. Amendments: Whenever an existing statute (or a section of the Indiana Constitution) is being amended, the text of the existing provision will appear in this style type, additions will appear in this style type, and deletions will appear in this style type.
Additions: Whenever a new statutory provision is being enacted (or a new constitutional provision adopted), the text of the new provision will appear in this style type. Also, the word NEW will appear in that style type in the introductory clause of each SECTION that adds a new provision to the Indiana Code or the Indiana Constitution.
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SENATE BILL No. 136



    A BILL FOR AN ACT to amend the Indiana Code concerning the general assembly.

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Indiana:

SOURCE: IC 2-5.5-5; (10)SB0136.1.1. -->     SECTION 1. IC 2-5.5-5 IS ADDED TO THE INDIANA CODE AS A NEW CHAPTER TO READ AS FOLLOWS [EFFECTIVE JULY 1, 2010]:
     Chapter 5. Redistricting Study Committee
    Sec. 1. The redistricting study committee is established.
    Sec. 2. The committee consists of the following members:
        (1) Four (4) members of the senate appointed by the president pro tempore of the senate. Not more than two (2) members of the committee appointed under this subdivision may be members of the same political party.
        (2) Four (4) members of the house of representatives appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives. Not more than two (2) members of the committee appointed under this subdivision may be members of the same political party.
        (3) The following members:
            (A) Two (2) citizens of Indiana appointed by the president pro tempore of the senate.
            (B) Two (2) citizens of Indiana appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives.
            (C) Two (2) citizens of Indiana appointed by the minority leader of the senate.
            (D) Two (2) citizens of Indiana appointed by the minority leader of the house of representatives.
        (4) The chief justice of the supreme court.
    Sec. 3. The chief justice of the supreme court is the chair of the committee.
    Sec. 4. The committee shall do the following:
        (1) Study the topic of redistricting and make recommendations on ways to improve the redistricting process, including a review of:
            (A) computer programs that are available to assist in the redistricting process; and
            (B) methods that are available to include the public in the redistricting process.
        (2) Study proposals to amend the Constitution of the State of Indiana to establish an independent commission to draw legislative and congressional district boundaries, beginning with the 2021 redistricting.
        (3) Prepare draft legislation to create a redistricting commission if the voters of Indiana adopt an amendment to the Constitution of the State of Indiana described in subdivision (2).
        (4) Examine the successes and failures of redistricting commissions in other states and analyze the results of the 2010 election in Indiana and other states to make recommendations to the general assembly.
        (5) Consider the following standards for drawing legislative and congressional districts:
            (A) The first principle for redistricting should be that populations of House districts and Senate districts, respectively, should be as nearly equal as practicable.
            (B) Because the protection of the representation and interests of the people of Indiana is of paramount importance, districts should not be drawn to improperly favor any person or political party.
            (C) Traditional neighborhoods should be preserved.
            (D) Local communities of interest based upon cultural, ethnic, geographic, and socioeconomic similarities should be preserved.
            (E) Minority voting rights must be protected consistent with the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Indiana, as interpreted by federal and Indiana courts.
            (F) Districts should be compact, particularly where population density is greatest, to avoid dividing communities of interest.
            (G) Districts should have simple shapes. However, rational and logical deviations may occur in a district's boundaries to follow a political subdivision's boundaries or to follow natural geographic boundaries.
            (H) Districts must respect county boundary lines. However, a district boundary may cross a county boundary to preserve economic, social, and geographic populations and to approximate the ideal population of the district as closely as possible. The number of counties used to comprise a district should be kept to a minimum, and the counties within a district should be as contiguous as possible.
            (I) To prevent division of communities of interest, prevent voter confusion, and minimize administrative costs of elections, districts must, when practicable, not divide precincts.