Beshear calls Aug. 19 special session for legislative and judicial redistricting

06/20/2013 01:50 PM

Lawmakers will return to Frankfort Aug. 19 for what legislative leaders and the governor have promised will be no longer than a five-day special session to pass new legislative and judicial district maps.

Gov. Steve Beshear also said that the maps will be drawn using the same 2010 U.S. Census data that lawmakers used to craft new congressional maps in 2012. That will include counting the more than 8,400 federal prisoners. That had been in question after House leaders proposed a map this spring that didn’t count those prisoners.

Instead, Beshear said he received commitments from House Democratic and Senate Republican leaders to be consistent with the congressional maps.

Beshear formally issued the call for the special session Thursday afternoon. He said in a statement:

“Leaders in both chambers have indicated to me a willingness to utilize the same census numbers for legislative and judicial redistricting as were used for Congressional redistricting in 2012. This will make all redistricting plans consistent and avoid having to address Congressional redistricting again. I have therefore not included Congressional redistricting on the agenda for the upcoming special session. I am confident that both the House and Senate will have their plans drawn and any remaining issues resolved by Aug. 19 so the special session will last only five days and therefore minimize the expense to taxpayers.”

Republican Senate President Robert Stivers said the Senate is ready “to pass a fair redistricting plan” within the minimum time frame of five days.

House Speaker Greg Stumbo also issues a statement:

“President Stivers, our respective legislative leadership and I have agreed that the maps that we pass must be consistent. We as legislative leaders need to have an agreement to stay within the deviation range of plus or minus 5% within our state legislative maps and that we will split the minimum number of counties in order to abide by the mandates of the state Supreme Court.”

(For more details about what party leaders expect with the maps, watch Friday night’s edition of Pure Politics).


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