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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

SF 1810

as introduced - 85th Legislature (2007 - 2008) Posted on 12/15/2009 12:00am

KEY: stricken = removed, old language.
underscored = added, new language.

Current Version - as introduced

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A bill for an act
relating to elections; establishing a method of reapportionment; proposing coding
for new law in Minnesota Statutes, chapter 2A.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

Section 1.

new text begin [2A.13] DEFINITIONS.
new text end

new text begin Subdivision 1. new text end

new text begin Scope. new text end

new text begin The definitions in this section apply to this chapter.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 2. new text end

new text begin Chief election officer. new text end

new text begin "Chief election officer" means the secretary of state.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 3. new text end

new text begin Commission. new text end

new text begin "Commission" means the Temporary Redistricting Advisory
Commission established under section 2A.17.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 4. new text end

new text begin Federal census. new text end

new text begin "Federal census" means the decennial census required by
federal law to be conducted by the United States Census Bureau in every year ending in
zero.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 5. new text end

new text begin Four selecting authorities. new text end

new text begin "Four selecting authorities" means the
majority and minority leaders of the senate and the majority and minority leaders of the
house of representatives.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 6. new text end

new text begin Legal services staff. new text end

new text begin "Legal services staff" means the director of the
research department of the house of representatives, the director of the office of senate
counsel, research, and fiscal analysis, and the revisor of statutes.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 7. new text end

new text begin Partisan public office. new text end

new text begin "Partisan public office" means:
new text end

new text begin (1) an elective or appointive office in the executive or legislative branch or in an
independent establishment of the federal government;
new text end

new text begin (2) an elective office in the executive or legislative branch of the government of this
state, or an office which is filled by appointment and is excluded from the merit system
under section 44.03; and
new text end

new text begin (3) an office of a county, city, or other political subdivision of this state which is filled
by an election process involving nomination and election of candidates on a partisan basis.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 8. new text end

new text begin Plan. new text end

new text begin "Plan" means a plan for legislative and congressional
reapportionment drawn up pursuant to this chapter.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 9. new text end

new text begin Political party office. new text end

new text begin "Political party office" means an elective office
in the national or state organization of a political party, as defined by section 200.02,
subdivision 6.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 10. new text end

new text begin Relative. new text end

new text begin "Relative" means a person's father, mother, son, daughter,
brother, sister, uncle, aunt, first cousin, nephew, niece, husband, wife, grandfather,
grandmother, father-in-law, mother-in-law, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, brother-in-law,
sister-in-law, stepfather, stepmother, stepson, stepdaughter, stepbrother, stepsister, half
brother or half sister.
new text end

Sec. 2.

new text begin [2A.14] PREPARATIONS FOR REDISTRICTING.
new text end

new text begin (a) The legal services staff shall acquire appropriate information, review and
evaluate available facilities, and develop programs and procedures in preparation for
drawing congressional and legislative redistricting plans on the basis of each federal
census. Funds may be spent to purchase or lease equipment and materials only with
prior legislative approval.
new text end

new text begin (b) By December 31 of each year ending in zero, the legal services staff shall obtain
from the United States Census Bureau information regarding geographic and political
units in this state for which federal census population data has been gathered and will be
tabulated. The legal services staff shall use that data to:
new text end

new text begin (1) prepare necessary descriptions of geographic and political units for which
census data will be reported and which are suitable for use as components of legislative
districts; and
new text end

new text begin (2) prepare maps of counties, cities, and other geographic units within the state,
which may be used to illustrate the locations of legislative district boundaries proposed in
plans drawn in accordance with section 2A.16.
new text end

new text begin (c) As soon as possible after January 1 of each year ending in one, the legal services
staff shall obtain from the United States Census Bureau the population data needed for
legislative districting which the census bureau is required to provide this state under Public
Law 94-171, and shall use that data to assign a population figure based upon certified
federal census data to each geographic or political unit described under paragraph (b),
clause (1). The legal services staff shall then begin the preparation of congressional and
legislative districting plans as required by section 2A.15.
new text end

Sec. 3.

new text begin [2A.15] TIMETABLE FOR PREPARATION OF PLAN.
new text end

new text begin Subdivision 1. new text end

new text begin Delivery of bills; intent. new text end

new text begin Not later than April 1 of each year ending
in one, the legal services staff shall deliver to the secretary of the senate and the chief
clerk of the house of representatives identical bills embodying a plan of legislative and
congressional districting prepared in accordance with section 2A.16. It is the intent of
this chapter that the legislature shall bring the bill to a vote in either the senate or the
house of representatives expeditiously, but not less than seven days after the report of the
commission required by section 2A.18 is received and made available to the members
of the legislature, under a procedure or rule permitting no amendments except those of a
purely corrective nature. It is further the intent of this chapter that if the bill is approved
by the first house in which it is considered, it must expeditiously be brought to a vote in
the second house under a similar procedure or rule.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 2. new text end

new text begin Second plan. new text end

new text begin If the bill embodying the plan submitted by the legal services
staff under subdivision 1 fails to be approved by a constitutional majority in either the
senate or the house of representatives, the secretary of the senate or the chief clerk of the
house of representatives, as the case may be, shall at once transmit to the legal services
staff information which the senate or house of representatives may direct regarding reasons
why the plan was not approved. The legal services staff shall prepare a bill embodying
a second plan of legislative and congressional districting prepared in accordance with
section 2A.16, and taking into account the reasons cited by the senate or house of
representatives for its failure to approve the plan insofar as it is possible to do so within
the requirements of section 2A.16. If a second plan is required under this subdivision, the
bill embodying it must be delivered to the secretary of the senate and the chief clerk of the
house of representatives not later than May 1 of the year ending in one, or 21 days after the
date of the vote by which the senate or the house of representatives failed to approve the
bill submitted under subdivision 1, whichever date is later. It is the intent of this chapter
that, if it is necessary to submit a bill under this subdivision, the bill be brought to a vote
not less than seven days after the bill is printed and made available to the members of the
legislature, in the same manner as prescribed for the bill required under subdivision 1.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 3. new text end

new text begin Third plan. new text end

new text begin If the bill embodying the plan submitted by the legal services
staff under subdivision 2 fails to be approved by a constitutional majority in either the
senate or the house of representatives, the same procedure as prescribed by subdivision 2
must be followed. If a third plan is required under this subdivision, the bill embodying
it must be delivered to the secretary of the senate and the chief clerk of the house of
representatives not later than June 1 of the year ending in one, or 21 days after the date
of the vote by which the senate or the house of representatives failed to approve the bill
submitted under subdivision 2, whichever date is later. It is the intent of this chapter that,
if it is necessary to submit a bill under this subdivision, the bill be brought to a vote within
the same time period after its delivery to the secretary of the senate and the chief clerk of
the house of representatives as is prescribed for the bill submitted under subdivision 2, but
that the bill must be subject to amendment in the same manner as other bills.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 4. new text end

new text begin Earlier congressional district plans; delayed census data.
new text end

new text begin Notwithstanding subdivisions 1, 2, and 3:
new text end

new text begin (a) If population data from the federal census which is sufficient to permit
preparation of a congressional districting plan complying with article IV, section 3, of
the Constitution of the state of Minnesota becomes available at an earlier time than the
population data needed to permit preparation of a legislative districting plan in accordance
with section 2A.16, the legal services staff shall so inform the presiding officers of the
senate and house of representatives. If the presiding officers so direct, the legal services
staff shall prepare a separate bill establishing congressional districts and submit it
separately from the bill establishing legislative districts. It is the intent of this chapter that
the legislature shall proceed to consider the congressional districting bill in substantially
the manner prescribed by subdivisions (1), (2), and (3).
new text end

new text begin (b) If the population data for legislative districting which the United States Census
Bureau is required to provide this state under Public Law 94-171 and, if used by the
legal services staff, the corresponding topologically integrated geographic encoding and
referencing data file for that population data is not available to the legal services staff on
or before February 1 of the year ending in one, the dates in this section must be extended
by a number of days equal to the number of days after February 1 of the year ending in
one that the federal census population data and the topologically integrated geographic
encoding and referencing data file for legislative districting becomes available.
new text end

Sec. 4.

new text begin [2A.16] REDISTRICTING STANDARDS.
new text end

new text begin Subdivision 1. new text end

new text begin Population standards. new text end

new text begin Legislative and congressional districts must
be established on the basis of population in accordance with paragraphs (a) to (c).
new text end

new text begin (a) Senate districts and representative districts, respectively, must each have a
population as nearly equal as practicable to the ideal population for each kind of district,
determined by dividing the number of districts to be established into the population of
the state reported in the federal decennial census. Senate districts and representative
districts must not vary in population from the respective ideal district populations except
as necessary to comply with one of the other standards in this section. In no case may
the quotient, obtained by dividing the total of the absolute values of the deviations of all
district populations from the applicable ideal district population by the number of districts
established, exceed one percent of the applicable ideal district population. No senate
district may have a population which exceeds that of any other senate district by more
than five percent, and no representative district may have a population which exceeds that
of any other representative district by more than five percent.
new text end

new text begin (b) Congressional districts must each have a population as nearly equal as practicable
to the ideal district population, derived as prescribed in paragraph (a). No congressional
district may have a population which varies by more than one percent from the applicable
ideal district population, except as necessary to comply with article IV, section 3, of the
Constitution of the state of Minnesota.
new text end

new text begin (c) If a challenge is filed with the Supreme Court alleging excessive population
variance among districts established in a plan adopted by the legislature, the legislature
has the burden of justifying any variance in excess of one percent between the population
of a district and the applicable ideal district population.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 2. new text end

new text begin Political subdivision boundaries. new text end

new text begin To the extent possible, district
boundaries must coincide with the boundaries of political subdivisions of the state. The
number of counties and cities divided among more than one district must be as small
as possible. If there is a choice between dividing local political subdivisions, the more
populous subdivisions must be divided before the less populous subdivisions, but this
standard does not apply to a legislative district boundary drawn along a county line which
passes through a city that lies in more than one county.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 3. new text end

new text begin Convenient contiguous territory. new text end

new text begin Districts must be composed of
convenient contiguous territory. Areas which meet only at the points of adjoining corners
are not contiguous.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 4. new text end

new text begin Compactness. new text end

new text begin (a) It is preferable that districts be compact in form, but the
standards in paragraph (c), clauses (1), (2), and (3), take precedence over compactness if a
conflict arises between compactness and those standards. In general, compact districts
are those which are square, rectangular, or hexagonal in shape to the extent permitted by
natural or political boundaries. If it is necessary to compare the relative compactness of
two or more districts or of two or more alternative districting plans, the tests prescribed
by subdivision 1, paragraphs (b) and (c), must be used. Should the results of these two
tests be contradictory, the standard in subdivision 1, paragraph (b), must be given greater
weight than the standard in subdivision 1, paragraph (c).
new text end

new text begin (b) The definitions in clauses (1) to (4) apply to this subdivision.
new text end

new text begin (1) "Population data unit" means a civil township, election precinct, census
enumeration district, census city block group, or other unit of territory having clearly
identified geographic boundaries and for which a total population figure is included in or
can be derived directly from certified federal census data.
new text end

new text begin (2) The "geographic unit center" of a population data unit is that point approximately
equidistant from its northern and southern extremities, and also approximately equidistant
from its eastern and western extremities. This point must be determined by visual
observation of a map of the population data unit, unless it is otherwise determined within
the context of an appropriate coordinate system developed by the federal government
or another qualified and objective source and obtained for use in this state with prior
approval of the legislature.
new text end

new text begin (3) The "x" coordinate of a point in this state refers to the relative location of that
point along the east-west axis of the state. Unless otherwise measured within the context
of an appropriate coordinate system obtained for use as permitted by paragraph (c), clause
(2), the "x" coordinate must be measured along a line drawn due east from a due north
and south line running through the point which is the northwestern extremity of the state
of Minnesota, to the point to be located.
new text end

new text begin (4) The "y" coordinate of a point in this state refers to the relative location of that
point along the north-south axis of the state. Unless otherwise measured within the
context of an appropriate coordinate system obtained for use as permitted by paragraph
(c), clause (2), the "y" coordinate must be measured along a line drawn due south from
the northernmost boundary of the state or a reasonable extension of that boundary, to the
point to be located.
new text end

new text begin (c) The compactness of a district is greatest when the length of the district and the
width of the district are equal. The measure of a district's compactness is the absolute
value of the difference between the length and the width of the district.
new text end

new text begin (1) In measuring the length and the width of a district by means of electronic
data processing, the difference between the "x" coordinates of the easternmost and the
westernmost geographic unit centers included in the district must be compared to the
difference between the "y" coordinates of the northernmost and southernmost geographic
unit centers included in the district.
new text end

new text begin (2) To determine the length and width of a district by manual measurement, the
distance from the northernmost point or portion of the boundary of a district to the
southernmost point or portion of the boundary of the same district and the distance from
the westernmost point or portion of the boundary of the district to the easternmost point or
portion of the boundary of the same district must each be measured. If the northernmost or
southernmost portion of the boundary, or each of these points, is a part of the boundary
running due east and west, the line used to make the measurement required by this
paragraph must either be drawn due north and south or as nearly so as the configuration of
the district permits. If the easternmost or westernmost portion of the boundary, or each of
these points, is a part of the boundary running due north and south, a similar procedure
must be followed. The lines to be measured for the purpose of this paragraph must each be
drawn as required by this paragraph, even if some part of either or both lines lies outside
the boundaries of the district which is being tested for compactness.
new text end

new text begin (3) The absolute values computed for individual districts under this paragraph may
be cumulated for all districts in a plan in order to compare the overall compactness of two
or more alternative districting plans for the state or for a portion of the state. However,
it is not valid to cumulate or compare absolute values computed under clause (1) with
those computed under clause (2).
new text end

new text begin (d) The compactness of a district is greatest when the ratio of the dispersion of
population about the population center of the district to the dispersion of population about
the geographic center of the district is one to one, the nature of this ratio being such that it
is always greater than zero and can never be greater than one to one.
new text end

new text begin (1) The population dispersion about the population center of a district, and about the
geographic center of a district, is computed as the sum of the products of the population of
each population data unit included in the district multiplied by the square of the distance
from that geographic unit center to the population center or the geographic center of the
district, as the case may be. The geographic center of the district is defined by averaging
the locations of all geographic unit centers which are included in the district. The
population center of the district is defined by computing the population-weighted average
of the "x" coordinates and "y" coordinates of each geographic unit center assigned to the
district, it being assumed for the purpose of this calculation that each population data unit
possesses uniform density of population.
new text end

new text begin (2) The ratios computed for individual districts under this paragraph may be
averaged for all districts in a plan in order to compare the overall compactness of two or
more alternative districting plans for the state or for a portion of the state.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 5. new text end

new text begin Prohibited purposes. new text end

new text begin No district may be drawn for the purpose of favoring
a political party, incumbent legislator or member of Congress, or other person or group
or for the purpose of augmenting or diluting the voting strength of a language or racial
minority group. In establishing districts, no use may be made of any of the following data:
new text end

new text begin (1) addresses of incumbent legislators or members of Congress;
new text end

new text begin (2) political affiliations of registered voters;
new text end

new text begin (3) previous election results; or
new text end

new text begin (4) demographic information, other than population head counts, except as required
by the Constitution and the laws of the United States.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 6. new text end

new text begin Inclusion in larger districts. new text end

new text begin In order to minimize electoral confusion and
to facilitate communication within state legislative districts, each plan drawn under this
section must provide that each representative district is wholly included within a single
senate district and that, so far as possible, each representative and each senate district is
included within a single congressional district. However, the standards established by
subdivisions 1 to 5 take precedence where a conflict arises between those standards and
the requirement, so far as possible, of including a senatorial or representative district
within a single congressional district.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 7. new text end

new text begin Vacancies. new text end

new text begin Each bill embodying a plan drawn under this section must
provide that a vacancy in the legislature which takes office in the year ending in one,
occurring at a time which makes it necessary to fill the vacancy at a special election
held pursuant to section 204D.17, must be filled from the same district which elected the
senator or representative whose seat is vacant.
new text end

Sec. 5.

new text begin [2A.17] TEMPORARY REDISTRICTING ADVISORY COMMISSION.
new text end

new text begin (a) Not later than February 15 of each year ending in one, a five-member Temporary
Redistricting Advisory Commission must be established as provided by this section. The
commission's only duties are those prescribed by section 2A.18.
new text end

new text begin (1) Each of the four selecting authorities shall certify to the chief election officer the
authority's appointment of a person to serve on the commission. The certifications may
be made at any time after the majority and minority leaders have been selected for the
legislature which takes office in the year ending in one, even though that legislature's term
of office has not actually begun.
new text end

new text begin (2) Within 30 days after the four selecting authorities have certified their respective
appointments to the commission, but in no event later than February 15 of the year ending
in one, the four commission members so appointed must select, by a vote of at least
three members, and certify to the chief election officer the fifth commission member, to
serve as chair.
new text end

new text begin (3) A vacancy on the commission must be filled by the initial selecting authority
within 15 days after the vacancy occurs.
new text end

new text begin (4) Members of the commission must receive a per diem, travel expenses, and
reimbursement for other necessary expenses incurred in performing their duties under this
section and section 2A.18. The per diem and expenses must be paid from the general fund.
new text end

new text begin (b) No person may be appointed to the commission who:
new text end

new text begin (1) is not an eligible elector of the state at the time of selection;
new text end

new text begin (2) holds partisan public office or political party office; or
new text end

new text begin (3) is a relative of or is employed by a member of the legislature or Congress, or is
employed directly by the legislature or Congress.
new text end

Sec. 6.

new text begin [2A.18] DUTIES OF COMMISSION.
new text end

new text begin (a) The commission has the duties in paragraphs (b) to (e).
new text end

new text begin (b) If, in preparation of plans as required by this chapter, the legal services staff
is confronted with the necessity to make any decision for which no clearly applicable
guideline is provided by section 2A.16, the legal services staff may submit a written
request for direction to the commission.
new text end

new text begin (c) Prior to delivering any plan and the bill embodying that plan to the secretary of
the senate and the chief clerk of the house of representatives in accordance with section
2A.15, the legal services staff must provide to persons outside the legal services staff only
information regarding the plan required by policies agreed upon by the commission.
This paragraph does not apply to population data furnished to the legal services staff by
the United States Census Bureau.
new text end

new text begin (d) Upon each delivery by the legal services staff to the legislature of a bill
embodying a plan, pursuant to section 2A.15, the commission must, at the earliest feasible
time, make available to the public the following information:
new text end

new text begin (1) copies of the bill delivered by the legal services staff to the legislature;
new text end

new text begin (2) maps illustrating the plan;
new text end

new text begin (3) a summary of the standards prescribed by section 2A.16 for development of
the plan; and
new text end

new text begin (4) a statement of the population of each district included in the plan, and the relative
deviation of each district population from the ideal district population.
new text end

new text begin (e) Upon the delivery by the legal services staff to the legislature of a bill embodying
an initial plan, as required by section 2A.15, subdivision 1, the commission must:
new text end

new text begin (1) as expeditiously as reasonably possible, schedule and conduct at least three
public hearings, in different geographic regions of the state, on the plan embodied in the
bill delivered by the legal services staff to the legislature; and
new text end

new text begin (2) following the hearings, promptly prepare and submit to the secretary of
the senate and the chief clerk of the house of representatives a report summarizing
information and testimony received by the commission in the course of the hearings. The
commission's report must include any comments and conclusions which its members
consider appropriate on the information and testimony received at the hearings or
otherwise presented to the commission.
new text end