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With Indiana Census Data Out, Redrawing Districts Begins

In 2011, redrawing districts could be different from how it was done in 2000.

Redrawing the lines for Indiana districts may be more difficult then you would expect. The official 2010 Census redistricting data summary file will be used to remap federal, state and local legislative districts. However, Brianna Dines, campus coordinator for Democracy Matters IU, said the General Assembly will be scrutinized over the new map.

“Often times that process is, well legally its done by the legislature and the governor signs off on it, and so its definitely fraught with partisanship and of course, incumbents want to keep their jobs, so its in their interest to draw the lines in such a way that they will get reelected,” Dines said.

The concern is that new boundaries will split up communities with similar concerns and would affect how the cities are represented. Julia Vaughn, policy director and lobbyist for Common Cause, mentioned that citizens will have the opportunity to engage in decision making.

“This has always been a process that’s ultra-partisan,” Vaughn said. “It Really goes on in the backrooms of the statehouse, but in 2011 it has the potential to be on computer screens of Hoosiers all across the state.”

Online software will be available soon so the public can draw their own maps for submission, and public forums will be held in all 9 districts for citizens to voice their opinions.

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