Indiana Democrats are calling on Republican legislative leaders to hold more public hearings on the state’s redistricting process.
In a letter sent Friday to House Speaker Todd Huston (R-Fishers) and President Pro Tempore of the Senate Rod Bray (R-Martinsville), House Democratic leader Phil GiaQuinta (D-Fort Wayne) said the feedback at the scheduled hearings will be of little value, because they’ll take place before new maps are available.
“The public will be commenting on abstract concepts rather than detailed proposals,” GiaQuinta wrote.
Republican leadership announced Thursday a series of hearings to get public input on the state’s redistricting process. They’ll be held throughout the state on Aug. 6, 7 and 11, but new maps won’t be available by then.
Census data necessary for redistricting aren’t expected until Aug. 16. Proposed maps are expected by early September.
After redistricting was completed in 2011, Republicans quickly secured a General Assembly supermajority that has continued to grow. With that supermajority, the GOP will control nearly every aspect of this round of redistricting.
Activists have called for the public to have at least a month to review proposed district maps before they are finalized, but Republican legislative leaders have not agreed.
In the letter, GiaQuinta requested a second set of hearings after Republican redistricting plans are made public.
Huston and Bray’s offices did not immediately respond to request for comment.