130th Ohio General Assembly
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H. J. R. No. 12  As Introduced
As Introduced

130th General Assembly
Regular Session
2013-2014
H. J. R. No. 12


Representative Huffman 



A JOINT RESOLUTION
Proposing to amend Sections 1, 2, 6, 7, 12, and 13; to amend, for the purpose of adopting a new section number as indicated in parentheses, Section 13 (14); to enact new Section 13; and to repeal Section 14 of Article XI of the Constitution of the State of Ohio to revise the redistricting process for General Assembly districts.

       Be it resolved by the General Assembly of the State of Ohio, three-fifths of the members elected to each house concurring herein, that there shall be submitted to the electors of the state, in the manner prescribed by law at the general election to be held on November 3, 2015, a proposal to amend Sections 1, 2, 6, 7, 12, and 13; to amend, for the purpose of adopting a new section number as indicated in parentheses, Section 13 (14); and to enact new Section 13 of Article XI of the Constitution of the State of Ohio to read as follows:

1.  The(A) The Ohio redistricting commission shall be responsible for the redistricting of this state for the general assembly. The commission shall consist of the following seven members:

       (1) The governor,;

       (2) The auditor of state,;

       (3) The secretary of state, one;

       (4) One person chosenappointed by the speaker of the house of representatives and;

       (5) One person appointed by the leader inpresident of the senate of the political party of which the speaker is a member, and one;

       (6) One person chosenappointed by the legislative leaders in the two housesleader of the majorlargest political party in the house of representatives of which the speaker is not a member shall be the persons responsible for the apportionment of this state for members of the general assembly;

       (7) One person appointed by the legislative leader of the largest political party in the senate of which the president of the senate is not a member.

       Such persons, or a majority of their number, shall meet and establish in the manner prescribed in this Article the boundaries for each of ninety-nine house of representatives districts and thirty-three senate districts. Such meeting shall convene on a date designated by the governor between August 1 and October 1 in the year one thousand nine hundred seventy-one and every tenth year thereafter. The governor shall give such persons two weeks advance notice of the date, time, and place of such meeting.

       The governor shall cause the apportionment to be published no later than October 5 of the year in which it is made, in such manner as provided by law.

       No appointed member of the commission shall be a current member of congress.

       (B) Unless otherwise specified in this Article, a simple majority of the commission members shall be required for any action by the commission. Except as otherwise provided in Section 14 of this Article, the affirmative vote of four members of the commission, including at least one member of the commission who is a member of the largest political party represented in the general assembly and at least one member of the commission who is a member of the second largest political party represented in the general assembly, shall be required to adopt any plan.

       (C) At the first meeting of the commission, which the governor shall convene only in a year ending in the numeral one, except as provided in Sections 13 and 14 of this Article, the members shall select co-chairpersons, one of whom shall be a member of the largest political party represented in the general assembly and one of whom shall be a member of the second largest political party represented in the general assembly, and shall set a schedule for the adoption of procedural rules for the operation of the commission.

       The commission may release to the public a proposed plan for the boundaries for each of the ninety-nine house of representatives districts and the thirty-three senate districts. The commission shall draft a proposed plan in the manner prescribed in this Article. Before adopting a final general assembly district plan, the commission shall conduct a minimum of three public hearings across the state to seek public input regarding the redistricting process and any proposed plan. All meetings of the commission shall be open to the public. Meetings shall be broadcast by electronic means of transmission using a medium readily accessible by the general public, subject to the discretion of the commission.

       The commission shall adopt a final plan not earlier than the last week of August of a year ending in the numeral one but not later than the thirty-first day of August of a year ending in the numeral one. After the commission adopts a plan, the commission shall file the plan with the secretary of state. Upon filing with the secretary of state, the plan shall become effective.

       Not more than six weeks after the adoption of a general assembly plan, the co-chairpersons of the commission shall jointly dissolve the commission.

       (D) The general assembly shall be responsible for making the appropriations it determines necessary in order for the commission to perform its duties under this Article.

       Section 2.   The apportionmentredistricting of this state for members of the general assembly shall be made in the following manner: The whole population of the state, as determined by the federal decennial census or, if such is unavailable, such other basis as the general assembly may direct, shall be divided by the number "ninety-nine" and the quotient shall be the ratio of representation in the house of representatives for ten years next succeeding such apportionmentredistricting. The whole population of the state as determined by the federal decennial census or, if such is unavailable, such other basis as the general assembly may direct, shall be divided by the number "thirty-three" and the quotient shall be the ratio of representation in the senate for ten years next succeeding such apportionmentredistricting.

       Section 6.   District boundaries established pursuant to this Article shall not be changed until the ensuing federal decennial census and the ensuing apportionmentredistricting or as provided in section 13 or 14 of this Article, notwithstanding the fact that boundaries of political subdivisions or city wards within the district may be changed during that time. District boundaries shall be created by using the boundaries of political subdivisions and city wards as they exist at the time of the federal decennial census on which the apportionmentredistricting is based, or such other basis as the general assembly has directed.

       Section 7.   (A) Every house of representatives district shall be compact and composed of contiguous territory, and the boundary of each district shall be a single nonintersecting continuous line. To

       (B) The commission shall minimize the splitting of political subdivisions. As used in this section, "political subdivision" means a county, a municipal corporation, a township, or a municipal ward.

        (1) Dividing a noncontiguous political subdivision shall not be considered splitting the political subdivision if its noncontiguous portions are included in separate districts. However, dividing a noncontiguous political subdivision shall be considered splitting the political subdivision if any noncontiguous portion is divided into separate districts.

        (2) Dividing, along a county line, a political subdivision that has territory in more than one county shall not be considered splitting the political subdivision.

       (C) To the extent consistent with the requirements of section 3 of this Article, the boundary lines of house of representatives districts shall be so drawn as to delineate an area containing one or more whole counties.

       (B)(D) Where the requirements of section 3 of this Article cannot feasibly be attained by forming a house of representatives district from a whole county or counties, such district shall be formed by combining the areas of governmental units giving preference in the order named to counties, townships, municipalities, and city wardswhole political subdivisions, other than a county.

       (C)(E) Where the requirements of section 3 of this Article cannot feasibly be attained by combining the areas of governmental unitswhole political subdivisions, other than a county, as prescribed in division (B)(D) of this section, only one such unitpolitical subdivision may be divided between two house of representatives districts, giving preference in the selection of a unit for division to a township, a city ward, a city, and a village in the order named.

       (D)(F) In making a new apportionmentredistricting plan, house of representatives district boundaries established by the preceding apportionment shall be adopted to the extent reasonably consistent with the requirements of section 3 of this Article.

       Section 12.   At any time the boundaries of senate districts are changed in any plan of apportionmentredistricting made pursuant to any provision of this Article, a senator whose term will not expire within two years of the time the plan ofapportionmentredistricting is made shall represent, for the remainder of the term for which hethe senator was elected, the senate district which contains the largest portion of the population of the district from which hethe senator was elected, and the district shall be given the number of the district from which the senator was elected. If more than one senator whose term will not so expire would represent the same district by following the provisions of this section, the persons responsible for apportionmentcommission, by a majority of theirits number, shall designate which senator shall represent the district and shall designate which district the other senator or senators shall represent for the balance of their term or terms.

13.   (A) If the Ohio redistricting commission fails to adopt a final general assembly district plan not later than the thirty-first day of August of a year ending in a numeral one, in accordance with Section 1 of this Article, the following procedure shall apply:

       (1) Not later than the twenty-third day of September of that year, the governor, the auditor of state, and the secretary of state, acting independently of the commission and by a simple majority vote of their number, shall create a general assembly district plan.

       (2) Not later than the thirtieth day of September of that year, the governor, the auditor of state, and the secretary of state shall call a meeting of the commission and shall provide the commission with a final opportunity to adopt the plan created under division (A)(1) of this section by the affirmative vote of four members of the commission, including at least one member of the commission who is a member of the largest political party represented in the general assembly and at least one member of the commission who is a member of the second largest political party represented in the general assembly, in accordance with Section 1 of this Article.

       (3) If the commission fails to adopt the plan created under division (A)(1) of this section not later than the first day of October of that year, the governor shall file the plan with the secretary of state. Upon filing with the secretary of state, the plan shall become effective.

       (B) A general assembly district plan that becomes effective under division (A)(3) of this section shall be effective for elections occurring in the year following the year in which the plan was adopted. At the general election conducted in that year, the following question shall be submitted to the electors of the state:

       "Shall the Ohio Redistricting Commission convene to draw new General Assembly districts?"

       (C) If a majority of the electors vote in favor of convening the commission to adopt a new general assembly district plan, the commission shall convene not earlier than the first day of February of the following year to adopt a plan in accordance with this Article. The commission shall draw the new plan using the same population and political subdivision and city ward boundary data as were used to draw the plan that became effective under division (A)(3) of this section.

       (D) If a majority of the electors vote against convening the commission to adopt a new general assembly district plan, the district plan that became effective under division (A)(3) of this section shall remain in effect until one-half of the general elections for the general assembly scheduled to occur during the period beginning after the election at which the electors voted not to convene the commission for the plan and ending in the next year ending in the numeral one have occurred. If an odd number of applicable elections are scheduled to occur during that period, the number of general elections to be held using the plan that became effective under division (A)(3) of this section shall be determined by rounding up to the next whole number. After a plan that became effective under division (A)(3) of this section ceases to be effective under this division, and not earlier than the first day of February of the year following the year in which the plan ceased to be effective, the commission shall convene to adopt a plan, in accordance with this Article, to be used until the next time for redistricting under this Article. The commission shall draw the new plan using the same population and political subdivision and city ward boundary data as were used to draw the plan that became effective under division (A)(3) of this section.

       Section 13 14.  (A) The supreme court of Ohio shall have exclusive, original jurisdiction in all cases arising under this Article. In

       (B) In the event that any section of this Constitution relating to apportionmentredistricting or any plan ofapportionmentredistricting made by the persons responsible for apportionment, by a majority of their number,Ohio redistricting commission is determined to be invalid by either the supreme court of Ohio, or the supremean unappealed final order of a court of the United Statescompetent jurisdiction, then notwithstanding any other provisions of this Constitution, the persons responsible for apportionment by a majority of their numbercommission shall reconvene to ascertain and determine a plan of apportionmentredistricting in conformity with such provisions of this Constitution as are then valid, including establishing terms of office and election of members of the general assembly from districts designated in the plan, to be used until the next regular apportionmentredistricting in conformity with such provisions of this Constitution as are then valid.

       (C) Notwithstanding any provision of this Constitution or any law regarding the residence of senators and representatives, a plan of apportionmentredistricting made pursuant to this section shall allow thirty days for persons to change residence in order to be eligible for election.

       The governor shall give the persons responsible for apportionment two weeks advance written notice of the date, time, and place of any meeting held pursuant to this section.

       (D) No court shall order, in any circumstance, the implementation or enforcement of any plan that has not been approved by the commission in the manner prescribed by this Article.

EFFECTIVE DATE AND REPEAL

       If adopted by a majority of the electors voting on this proposal, Sections 1, 2, 6, 7, 12, and 13 (14) of Article XI amended or amended and renumbered by this proposal and new Section 13 of Article XI enacted by this proposal take effect January 1, 2021, and existing Sections 1, 2, 6, 7, 12, and 13 and Section 14 of Article XI of the Constitution of the State of Ohio are repealed from that effective date.

SCHEDULE

       The amendments to Section 12 of Article XI of the Ohio Constitution in part substitute gender neutral for gender specific language. These gender neutralizing amendments are not intended to make a substantive change in the Ohio Constitution. The gender neutral language is to be construed as a restatement of, and substituted in a continuing way for, the corresponding gender specific language existing prior to adoption of the gender neutralizing amendments.

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