SB 1352Background and procedural information:
Democratic Senator Steven Geller introduced Senate Bill 1352 on 3/06/07, as a joint resolution proposing the repeal of section 16 of Article III of Florida’s constitution, relating to legislative apportionment and also creates a ballot issue to amend Florida’s constitution require a nine member commission to prepare an appointment plan for the state legislature and a redistricting plan for the congressional districts of the state.
Under the proposed legislation, are single-member districts a requirement or otherwise implied?
Single-member districts are required under the proposed legislation, and the districts will consist of 40 consecutively numbered senatorial districts and 120 consecutively numbered representative districts. The single-member districts shall be as nearly equal in population as practicable.
Does the proposed legislation provide for Voting Rights Act compliance (i.e. can the commission use voter history information)?
Yes, the proposed legislation provides for Voting Rights Act compliance, as it prevents the commission from drawing districts that would dilute the voting strength of a racial or language minority group. This goal takes precedence over the requirements that districts be contiguous and compact in form.
Under the proposed legislation, how is the commission formed?
A nine member commission will be formed, and no person or relative of a person who has served as an elected public official, party officer or Congressional employee within two years may be appointed as a member of the commission.
Under the proposed legislation, are competitive districts favored?
The proposed legislation implicitly favors, or rather assumes, competitive districts, by providing that a district may not be drawn for the purpose of favoring any political party, incumbent legislator, representative to U.S. Congress, nor take into account the addresses of incumbent legislators or representatives to the U.S. Congress.
Under the proposed legislation, can members of the public submit plans?
The legislation does not explicitly provide that members of the public have any input into the redistricting plans.
Does the proposed legislation allow for mid-decade redistricting?
No, the legislation does not allow for mid-decade redistricting.