RESEARCH & ADVOCACY UPDATE - REDISTRICTING
From City Club to the Halls of the Capitol - March 2013
City Club's 2012 redistricting research report found that forming a non-partisan, independent commission would be the best system to reduce partisanship and increase fairness in the always contentious process of modifying district boundaries after each census. Click here to read the full report. Although the 2011 Legislature did an amazing job passing a redistricting plan, the Club's research indicated that the factors contributing to their historic accomplishment were unlikely to be present in future cycles.
Representatives Vicki Berger (R - Salem) and Jules Bailey (D - Portland) recognized the merits of the Club's proposal and cosponsored HJR 17 and HB 2686, based directly on the Club's recommendations. In meetings with over 20 legislators, City Club members have stressed the importance of balanced, independent and transparent procedures to govern redistricting.
On March 4, 2013, a coalition led by City Club, including the Oregon League of Women Voters, Common Cause Oregon, and AARP, testified to the House Rules Committee, led by Representative Garrett, about these bills. City Club member and Chair of the Redistricting Advocacy Committee, James Ofsink, told the House Rules Committee, "Good government reforms are rarely anyone's top priority. Budget and education bills, public safety and other ever-present legislative issues have a justified tendency to take focus. However, HJR 17 and HB 2686, like all good government proposals, strengthen the very fabric of our representative democracy." The Redistricting Advocacy Committee will continue to represent the Club as they advocate in Salem for good government reforms to this critical process. Click here to listen to the March 4th hearing.
Stay tuned for more information!
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