Iowa redistricting map hearings scheduled for September

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Members of the joint session of the Iowa Legislature stand during Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds’ Condition of the State address before a joint session of the Iowa Legislature, Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2020, at the Statehouse in Des Moines, Iowa. (AP Photo/Matthew Putney)

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A state commission has scheduled three virtual public hearings in September pertaining to Iowa’s proposed new electoral maps.

The five-member Iowa Temporary Redistricting Advisory Commission voted Monday to hold the hearings on Sept. 20, 21 and 22. Details on how people can log in will be posted on a later date on the Legislature’s website.

The commission decided to meet on Sept. 23 to discuss the report it is required by law to present to the Legislature summarizing the public comments made at the hearings, online and in writing.

The first redistricting maps will be delivered on Sept. 16, beginning the process for redrawing political boundaries for legislative and congressional districts, said Ed Cook, legal counsel for the nonpartisan Legislative Services Agency, which is responsible for providing redistricting maps.

State law gives the commission up to 14 days after maps are drawn to hold public hearings to gather public comment and prepare a report for the Legislature.

Three days after they receive the report, lawmakers may meet in a special session to vote on the maps. Lawmakers may approve or reject two sets of maps without amendment. If a third set of maps is necessary, they can amend them like any other legislation before approving them.

In 2000, the Legislature rejected the first set of maps but approved the second. In 2010, lawmakers approved the first set.

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