Senate Passes Fair Redistricting Plan for 2018 State Senate Elections

By Gerald Dial

 

MONTGOMERY, AL – In response to a recent federal court ruling, the Alabama State Senate passed Senate Bill 403, which adjusts the lines for twenty-one state senate districts – with significant changes to five – ahead of the 2018 elections. Although the court ruled unconstitutional only three state senate districts, more were redrawn in an effort of fairness.

“We went above and beyond to address the court’s concerns, as evidenced by the number of districts we changed,” said Senator Gerald Dial (R-Lineville), chairman of the Joint Legislative Committee on Reapportionment. “More counties are made whole in the new maps, and we adhered to a strict one-percent population variance between districts. I made it a point to work with every member of the state senate throughout the entire process.”

Only senate districts 20, 26, and 28 required adjustment. Dial’s plan redraws senate districts 5, 8, 9, 10, and 12 through 35 to be fully confident all state senate districts are fair and constitutional. The plan also put seven counties back together.

“For too many years, previous legislatures used a five-percent population variance when redistricting every ten years. This flawed approach caused the need for massive adjustment to the maps in 2012,” observed Senator Jim McClendon (R-Springville), Co-Chairman of the Reapportionment Committee in 2012. “We did our best at the time with what we were provided. The new maps passed today help us get to a 100% solution.”

Senate Bill 403 now heads to the Alabama House of Representatives for consideration. There are six legislative days remaining to address redistricting of both the Alabama State Senate and Alabama House of Representatives.

Senator Gerald Dial represents District 13 in the Alabama Senate, which includes all or parts of Randolph, Lee, Cleburne, Clay, Cherokee, and Chambers counties.