Redistricting 

Principles

The members of the Fair Maps Texas Coalition support a wide range of reforms that would maximize transparency and public input in the redistricting process. We agree upon the following set of principles to guide the process of drawing legislative lines:

  • A full and accurate census count of everyone living in the U.S., regardless of age, citizenship, immigration status, and ability or eligibility to vote, 

  • The removal of barriers to full participation in the Census, including questions based on country of origin,

  • Strengthen outreach and data collection for the census,

  • Incarcerated or detained persons should be considered residents of their immediate pre-incarceration location or their family residence for purposes of reapportionment and redistricting,

  • Compliance with the federal Voting Rights Act, with the ultimate goal of protecting the rights of voters of color in redistricting,

  • Specific public timeline for the steps leading to a redistricting plan,

  • Full public disclosure throughout the redistricting process with meetings that are subject to open meeting laws,

  • Outreach to communities and public access to redistricting tools, proposed plans, and data used to allow meaningful participation,

  • Proposed plans should demonstrate due consideration of public input, which is to be collected at public hearings, 

  • Strong consideration of communities of interest must be given during the process,

  • Decision-makers must reflect the diversity of the population being redistricted,

  • Decision-makers should comply with the Texas Conflicts of Interests laws,

  • We support the creation of an independent citizens redistricting commission to draw both legislative and congressional district maps for the state, 

  • We also support reform efforts at the local level that would increase transparency and public involvement in the redistricting process,

  • The redistricting process must include a provision that any proposed plan should be adopted by the redistricting authority with more than a simple majority vote,

  • Remedial provisions to be established in the event that the redistricting authority fails to enact a plan:

    • Specific provisions should be made for court review of redistricting measures and for courts to require the redistricting authority to act on a specific schedule,

    • Time limits should be set for initiating court action for review,

    • The courts should promptly review and rule on any challenge to a redistricting plan and require adjustments if the standards have not been met.

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