Today, Rep. Hicks-Hudson (D-Toledo) announced that she will introduce legislation this week to strengthen transparency requirements in the redistricting process and help Ohio fulfill its duties under the fair redistricting reforms voters passed in 2015 and 2018.
“Transparency and keeping the public informed is important. That’s why Democrats are rolling out legislation to require greater transparency and public access in the redistricting process,” said Rep. Hicks-Hudson. “This plan lives up to the spirit of what Ohioans voted for, expanding meetings and notice requirements, making more records public, and facilitating the public’s submission of maps and proposals and testimony both in person and virtually.”
In a memo to all House Members Monday, Rep. Hicks-Hudson outlined the Democratic bill to require a transparent and accessible redistricting process, which would:
- Provide for the constitutionally required submission of district plans from the public through a service and website hosted by the Legislative Service Commission.
- Create the constitutionally required joint committee to hold hearings on new districts
- Provide for the constitutionally required public hearings both before and after the introduction of state and congressional district plans.
- Require weekly public hearings by the General Assembly and the Redistricting Commission to brief the public and gather input from organizations, advocates and everyday Ohioans
- Appropriate funds to the Redistricting Commission and ensure equal, bipartisan, and timely access to resources for the legislative caucuses to perform their redistricting duties
- Require the governor to convene the Redistricting Commission by June 1, 2021
- Require the Redistricting Commission within 14 days of convening to adopt rules for the commission,
announce hiring of staff for the Commission, announce a plan for spending the Commission's appropriated funds in a bipartisan way, and adopt a plan for public hearings both before and after state or congressional maps are proposed