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7 LONG TITLE
8 General Description:
9 This bill modifies the Election Code to establish an independent, bipartisan redistricting
11 Highlighted Provisions:
12 This bill:
13 . establishes an independent, bipartisan redistricting commission that is composed of
15 . requires that redistricting only occur:
16 . every ten years after the decennial census; or
17 . in association with a change in the number of congressional or legislative seats
18 for a reason other than the decennial census;
19 . establishes the membership requirements and procedures for the commission;
20 . provides for the replacement and compensation of members;
21 . requires the commission to prepare a redistricting plan for presentation to the
23 . provides factors for the commission's consideration when preparing an advisory
24 redistricting plan;
25 . provides that technical staff for the commission be provided by the Office of
26 Legislative Research and General Counsel;
27 . permits the commission to hire its own legal counsel, executive director, and other
28 staff, and to incur reasonable expenses within the commission's budget and duties;
29 . requires the commission to adopt a draft plan and permits alternative plans to be
30 considered by the commission;
31 . requires the commission to hold public hearings on the draft plan and any
32 alternative plans adopted by the commission;
33 . requires the commission to adopt a final advisory redistricting plan and request that
34 the plan be submitted to the Legislature for the Legislature's consideration; and
35 . provides a severability clause.
36 Monies Appropriated in this Bill:
38 Other Special Clauses:
40 Utah Code Sections Affected:
42 20A-16-101, Utah Code Annotated 1953
43 20A-16-102, Utah Code Annotated 1953
44 20A-16-103, Utah Code Annotated 1953
45 20A-16-104, Utah Code Annotated 1953
46 20A-16-105, Utah Code Annotated 1953
47 20A-16-106, Utah Code Annotated 1953
48 20A-16-107, Utah Code Annotated 1953
49 20A-16-108, Utah Code Annotated 1953
51 Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
52 Section 1. Section 20A-16-101 is enacted to read:
55 20A-16-101. Title.
56 This chapter is known as the "Advisory Redistricting Commission."
57 Section 2. Section 20A-16-102 is enacted to read:
58 20A-16-102. Timing of redistricting.
59 (1) In accordance with Utah Constitution Article IX, Section 1, the Legislature shall
60 divide the state into congressional, legislative, and other districts at the session next following
61 an enumeration made by the United States.
62 (2) Redistricting may occur only at the following times:
63 (a) every ten years, in the year following the federal decennial census; and
64 (b) in association with a change in the number of congressional or legislative districts
65 that results from an event other than the federal decennial census.
66 Section 3. Section 20A-16-103 is enacted to read:
67 20A-16-103. Advisory Redistricting Commission -- Creation -- Appointment --
68 Requirements for commission members.
69 (1) There is created an Advisory Redistricting Commission to prepare an advisory
70 redistricting plan to the Legislature.
71 (2) (a) The commission shall:
72 (i) consist of nine members, appointed as provided in Subsection (2)(b); and
73 (ii) be reconstituted in connection with each redistricting, consistent with Section
74 20A-16-102 .
75 (b) (i) On or before January 31 of the year following the federal decennial census:
76 (A) two members shall be appointed by the president of the Senate;
77 (B) two members shall be appointed by the speaker of the House of Representatives;
78 (C) two members shall be appointed by the leader of the minority party in the Senate;
80 (D) two members shall be appointed by the leader of the minority party in the House of
82 (ii) (A) The four members appointed under Subsections (2)(b)(i)(A) and (B) shall
83 select one among them to be a vice chair of the commission.
84 (B) The four members appointed under Subsections (2)(b)(i)(C) and (D) shall select
85 one among them to be a vice chair of the commission.
86 (C) The two vice chairs selected under Subsections (2)(b)(ii)(A) and (B) shall appoint a
87 ninth member of the commission who shall be chair of the commission.
88 (3) (a) At the time of appointment, each commission member shall:
89 (i) be a citizen of the United States;
90 (ii) be at least 25 years of age; and
91 (iii) have been a resident of the state for three consecutive years immediately before
93 (b) The following persons may not be appointed to or serve on the commission:
94 (i) a person who holds an elected or appointed public office;
95 (ii) a lobbyist as defined in Section 36-11-102 ; or
96 (iii) a principal as defined in Section 36-11-102 .
97 (4) A person who serves as a member of the commission may not seek election to or
98 hold any of the offices for which the commission establishes districts under Subsection (1)
99 until after the completion of the election for that office that follows the adoption of a
100 redistricting plan by the commission of which the person was a member.
101 (5) When a vacancy occurs in the membership of the commission for any reason, the
102 vacancy shall be filled, within 14 days of the date of the vacancy, in the same manner as the
103 appointment of the original member.
104 (6) (a) Except as specifically required elsewhere in this chapter, attendance of a
105 majority of the members of the commission shall constitute a quorum for the conducting of
106 business and the taking of official action.
107 (b) The commission shall meet upon the request of a majority of the members of the
109 (7) (a) Members shall not receive compensation or benefits for their services, but
110 commission members who are not government employees may receive per diem and expenses
111 incurred in the performance of the members' official duties at the rates established by the
112 Division of Finance under Sections 63A-3-106 and 63A-3-107 .
113 (b) A commission member may decline to receive per diem and expenses for service to
114 the commission.
115 Section 4. Section 20A-16-104 is enacted to read:
116 20A-16-104. Duties of commission -- Standards for preparation of advisory
117 redistricting plans -- Staff.
118 (1) The commission shall prepare an advisory redistricting plan that divides the state
119 into single member districts for each congressional, state House, state Senate, and state school
120 board district as required by the decennial enumeration or other change in the number of
121 congressional or legislative seats consistent with Section 20A-16-102 .
122 (2) In preparing a draft, alternative, or final advisory redistricting plan as required
123 under this chapter, the commission shall do the following:
124 (a) at the commencement of the mapping process for both the congressional and
125 legislative districts, initially create districts of roughly equal population across the state; and
126 (b) adjust the districts as necessary to accommodate, to the extent practicable, the
127 following goals:
128 (i) complying with the requirements of the United States Constitution, the Utah State
129 Constitution, and the Voting Rights Act, 42 U.S.C. 1973, et seq.;
130 (ii) equalizing population between districts, using the most recent population data as
131 reported in the official federal census data;
132 (iii) creating contiguous and reasonably compact districts;
133 (iv) utilizing existing political boundaries and census tracts in the creation of district
135 (v) preserving communities of common interest;
136 (vi) utilizing natural and geographic boundaries and barriers in the creation of district
137 boundaries; and
138 (vii) promoting competitiveness and partisan fairness, where it would create no
139 significant detriment to the goals listed above.
140 (3) (a) The Office of Legislative Research and General Counsel shall provide the
141 technical staff for the commission.
142 (b) Upon a majority vote of the members of the commission, the commission may:
143 (i) employ an executive director, legal counsel, and other staff to assist the
144 commission; and
145 (ii) incur other reasonable expenses within the authorized budget of the commission
146 and consistent with the commission's duties.
147 Section 5. Section 20A-16-105 is enacted to read:
148 20A-16-105. Preparation and adoption of draft advisory redistricting plan --
149 Alternative advisory redistricting plans.
150 (1) The commission shall prepare and, by the affirmative vote of a majority of the
151 members of the commission, adopt a draft advisory redistricting plan within 150 days after the
152 later of:
153 (a) the date that the decennial enumeration data are available to the public; and
154 (b) the date the commission is constituted under Section 20A-16-103 .
155 (2) (a) In addition to the draft advisory redistricting plan, a commission member may
156 introduce one or more alternative redistricting plans for consideration by the commission.
157 (b) The commission, by a majority vote, may authorize one or more alternative
158 advisory redistricting plans to be presented as alternatives to the draft advisory redistricting
159 plan during the public hearings provided for in Section 20A-16-106 .
160 Section 6. Section 20A-16-106 is enacted to read:
161 20A-16-106. Public hearings -- Timing and locations -- Public notice.
162 (1) (a) Within 14 days after the date of adopting a draft advisory redistricting plan, the
163 commission shall hold the first of no less than seven public hearings throughout Utah as
165 (i) one in the Bear River region -- Box Elder, Cache, or Rich County;
166 (ii) one in the Southwest region -- Beaver, Garfield, Iron, Kane, or Washington
168 (iii) one in the Mountain region -- Summit, Utah, or Wasatch County;
169 (iv) one in the Central region -- Juab, Millard, Piute, Sanpete, Sevier, or Wayne
171 (v) one in the Southeast region -- Carbon, Emery, Grand, or San Juan County;
172 (vi) one in the Uintah Basin region -- Daggett, Duchesne, or Uintah County; and
173 (vii) one in the Wasatch Front region -- Davis, Morgan, Salt Lake, Tooele, or Weber
175 (b) At least two meetings must be held in a first or second class county, but the
176 meetings may not be held in the same county.
177 (c) The number and location of the public hearings shall be determined by a majority
178 vote of the commission.
179 (d) Subject to Subsection (1)(e), public hearings may be held in the order and on a
180 schedule adopted by a majority vote of the commission.
181 (e) The last public hearing shall be completed within 190 days after the later of:
182 (i) the date that the decennial enumeration data are available to the public; and
183 (ii) the date the commission is constituted under Section 20A-16-103 .
184 (2) At least three calendar days before the date of each public hearing, the commission
186 (a) provide written notice of the public hearing to:
187 (i) the lieutenant governor for posting on the state's website; and
188 (ii) each state senator, state representative, and county commission or county council
189 member who is elected in whole or in part from the region where the public hearing will be
190 held; and
191 (b) publish written notice of the public hearing detailing its time, date, and location in
192 at least one newspaper of general circulation in each county in the region where the public
193 hearing will be held.
194 (3) (a) During the public hearing, the commission shall either:
195 (i) record the public hearing, by video and audio, or by audio only, and deposit a
196 complete copy of the recording of meeting with the Division of Archives and Records Services
197 within seven days of the date of the meeting; or
198 (ii) take comprehensive minutes of the public hearing, detailing the names and titles of
199 each speaker and summarizing each speaker's comments.
200 (b) During each public hearing, the commission shall accept written comments from
201 the public.
202 (c) The Division of Archives and Records Services shall make copies of the written
203 comments and the recordings or minutes available to the public.
204 (4) Notwithstanding Subsection 20A-16-103 (6), public hearings may be held by the
205 commission with less than a quorum present, however, at least four members of the
206 commission shall attend each public hearing.
207 Section 7. Section 20A-16-107 is enacted to read:
208 20A-16-107. Final advisory redistricting plan -- Resolution for submission to
210 (1) (a) After completion of the public hearings, the commission shall prepare and adopt
211 a final advisory redistricting plan.
212 (b) In preparing the final advisory redistricting plan, the commission shall:
213 (i) review the following:
214 (A) the written comments and the records or minutes of the public hearings;
215 (B) the draft advisory redistricting plan; and
216 (C) as applicable, the alternative advisory redistricting plan; and
217 (ii) adopt a final advisory redistricting plan by adopting:
218 (A) the draft advisory redistricting plan;
219 (B) an alternative advisory redistricting plan; or
220 (C) a new plan that is prepared according to the requirements of Subsection
221 20A-16-104 (2).
222 (2) The commission shall complete the process of adopting a final advisory
223 redistricting plan on or before November 30 of the year following the federal decennial census,
224 but no earlier than the third Tuesday after the first Monday in November.
225 (3) Adoption of the advisory redistricting plan requires the affirmative vote of at least
226 six members of the commission.
227 (4) After adoption of the final advisory redistricting plan, the commission shall, by the
228 affirmative vote of at least six members of the commission, adopt a resolution that:
229 (a) states that a final advisory redistricting plan has been adopted by the commission;
230 (b) requests that the final advisory redistricting plan be submitted to the Legislature for
231 legislative review and action; and
232 (c) designates a member of the Legislature as the commission's preferred sponsor of
233 legislation to submit the plan to the Legislature.
234 Section 8. Section 20A-16-108 is enacted to read:
235 20A-16-108. Severability.
236 If any word, phrase, sentence, or section of this chapter or its application to any person
237 or circumstance is determined to be invalid, the invalidity does not affect other provisions or
238 applications of this chapter that can be given effect without the invalid provision or application,
239 and to this end the provisions of this chapter are severable.
Legislative Review Note
as of 1-30-08 2:33 PM