Political Districting & Redistricting

The concepts of “districting” and “redistricting” refer to a complex technical, legal and public-involvement process for creating equalized divisions of population specifically for voting purposes, at all levels of representative government.  This includes all cities, towns, and counties, legislatures, the U.S. Congress, community colleges and local school boards, which elect their representatives from particular geographic areas within their jurisdiction.

The process is not simply a matter of designating equal numbers of population within each district. One of the most significant challenges, as well as one of the most important objectives in a districting or redistricting process, is meeting the requirements of the federal Voting Rights Act of 1965.

The process involves many disciplines – law, politics, geography, demography, cartography, public relations, community-of-interest research, political science, public process management, and computer management of geographic and electoral information.  Some U.S. jurisdictions are required by the Department of Justice to obtain “pre-clearance” approval under §5 of the Act.  All jurisdictions in Arizona require pre-clearance.

REDISTRICTING PROJECTS MANAGED:

West-MEC Technical Education District, Phoenix AZ -- Redistricting of Governing Board Election Districts, 2005.

City of Phoenix, AZ -- Principal consultant for City Council redistricting process, 2002.

Gila County, AZ – Principal consultant for Supervisorial redistricting process, 2001.

Graham County, AZ -- Principal consultant for Supervisorial and Community College redistricting, 1993 and 2001.

Merced County, CA – Geo-demographic consultant for Supervisorial redistricting process, 2001. 

Yuma County, AZ -- Principal consultant for Supervisorial and Community College redistricting processes in 1992, 1995 and 2001.

Phoenix Union High School District -- Redistricting technical assistance on creating board election districts in conformance with requirements of the desegregation consent decree in Bencomo vs. PUHSD (CIV90-0369 PHX EHC), and of the federal Voting Rights Act, 1995. 

Coconino County, AZ – Redistricting technical consulting on redrawing of supervisorial districts, after county-prepared plan had been denied federal preclearance approval, 1992.

Arizona Western College Board Election Districts, 1992 and 2001

Gila County Provisional Community College Districts, 2002

Eastern Arizona College Board Election Districts, 1992 and 2001

ADDITIONAL PROJECTS:

City of Flagstaff, AZ -- Preparation of legislative maps for submission to the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission; consulting on geo-demographics; court testimony as an expert witness, 2004. 

Dickstein Shapiro Morin & Oshinsky Attorneys at Law, Washington DC – Geo-demographic consulting on competitiveness challenge to the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission’s Congressional districts, 2002. 

U. S. District Court Three-Judge Panel -- Arizonans for Fair Representation vs. Symington, et.al., -- after testifying as a fact witness, retained by the Court to help the judges with the computer technical aspects of creating a court-drawn congressional districts plan, 1991.