Court Wants to Speed Political Map Challenges - NBC Southern California

Court Wants to Speed Political Map Challenges

The court will use electronic petitions to expedite the process



    Court Wants to Speed Political Map Challenges
    Commissioner Vincent Barabba

    An attempt to expidite court challenges began just hours after California's new political maps received final approval Monday from a citizens redistricting commission.

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    The California Supreme Court issued an order Monday after the California Citizens Redistricting Commission certified the legislative and congressional maps. The order requires potential lawsuits to be uploaded to the court's website.

    The electronic petitions are required so the court can rule in time for the June 2012 election. That's the first election in which the maps would be used.

    Registered voters have until Sept. 29 file challenges. As of Tuesday morning, no lawsuits had been filed.

    A 14-member commission created when voters approved Prop 11 in November 2008 created the maps. Monday's commission vote provided formal approval of maps for Congress, the Legislature and the Board of Equalization.

    The final maps for State Assembly, State Senate and Board of Equalization were approved by 13-1 votes. The House of Representatives maps were approved 12-2.

    Republican commissioner Michael Ward voted no. He alleged the process was not transparent and that the citizens' commission "simply traded partisan backroom gerrymandering by politicians for partisan backroom gerrymandering by regular citizens."

    The commission chair, Vincent Barabba, disagreed with that assessment. He said there was no basis for Ward's assertion and the benefits of the new maps might take a few election cycles to become evident.