Vermont Redistricting 2000

Vermont’s Political Lineup

 

 

1991

2001

Governor

D*

D

State Senate

15D, 15R

16D, 14R

State House**

75R, 73D, 2I

62D, 83R, 1I, 4P

US Senators

1D, 1R

1D, 1I***

US Reps

1I

1I

*Lt. Governor, Democrat, assumed office upon elected Republican Governor’s death in August 1991

**In addition to major party candidates and an independent, Vermont’s House includes four members of the Progressive Party.

*** Jim Jeffords was elected to the U.S. Senate as a Republican, but became an independent in 2001

Redistricting Deadline

The Apportionment Board is required to submit initial legislative districts on August 15, 2001. The final districting plan will be approved late in the 2002 session.

Public Access

Statewide public hearings will be held. In addition, the Legislative Apportionment Board has a website with a calendar of all board meetings and hearings, a proposed plan, and transcripts of the hearings and board meetings.

Who’s in Charge of Redistricting?

The legislature must reject, approve or modify a plan proposed by an Apportionment Board -- historically they have rejected its plan. The board is advisory, and usually consists of five members; two are appointed by the governor from the major parties (those polling at least 25% in the last gubernatorial election), another two are selected by the major parties themselves, and a final member is appointed by the chief justice of the state Supreme Court who will serve as chair. If a third party candidate were to win more than 25%, then the Board would have seven members. The governor has veto power over the plan.

Districting Principles 

Principle

Congressional

State Legis.

Compactness

 

+

Contiguity

 

+

Political subdivisions

 

Communities of interest

  

Cores of prior districts

    

Protect incumbents

 

a

VRA 5

   

  + = required               - = prohibited              a=allowed

Legal Issues

In 1993, the house and senate legislative district plans enacted by the Vermont General Assembly were challenged on the ground of population deviation, compactness, contiguity, partisan gerrymandering, and failure to maintain county boundaries. The court dismissed all claims with the exception of one house district. Consideration of the single house district was remanded for further consideration into whether it best served communities of interest in the area. The district eventually was upheld after the General Assembly decided not to modify it in light of state constitutional requirements.

Political Landscape

Any controversy likely will center on the splitting of towns and other municipalities between two or more state legislative districts. With only one U.S. House district, federal redistricting is not an issue.

Irregularly Shaped District
No district drawn.

Contact Information

 Michael Chernick
 Legislative Counsel
 115 State St.
 Montpelier, VT 05633-5301
 802/828-2231
 802/828-2424 Fax
 MIKEC@wpgate.leg.state.vt.us