Senate Republicans today introduced legislation to address redistricting. The People’s Independent Maps Act would allow Illinois legislative redistricting maps to be created by an independent commission, rather than politicians.
The bill is Senate Bill 1325. It follows identical language as a constitutional amendment filed by Senator Julie Morrison, a Democrat from Deerfield, in 2019. That bill had garnered 37 co-sponsors in the Senate including 18 Democrats. An amendment pushed through the house passed in 2016 with 105 YES votes.
Senate Republican Leader Jim Durkin says that it is time.
Current Illinois law allows legislators to draw and approve a map by June 30th. The act would also give the Supreme Court the power to appoint 16 independent citizen commissioners to the Commission, it would reflect ethnic, gender, and racial demographics for the State and party affiliation would be evenly split with members without party affiliation.
The law would also prohibit legislators, state employees, and lobbyists from serving on it and the Commission would hold at least 10 public hearings throughout the State before it was adopted with at least 4 hearings after the map is proposed.
House Republicans have drawn up very similar legislature.