Bill Summary for H 200 (2017-2018)

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Summary date: 

Feb 27 2017

Bill Information:

View NCGA Bill Details2017-2018 Session
House Bill 200 (Public) Filed Monday, February 27, 2017
Intro. by McGrady, Stevens, Jordan, Hardister.

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Bill summary

Enacts new Article 1B, Nonpartisan Redistricting, in GS Chapter 120. Includes definitions applicable to Article 1B.

Establishes a five-member Temporary Redistricting Advisory Commission (Commission) no later than February 15 of each year ending in one. Provides additional details regarding Commission members and timelines. Lists three detailed functions of the Commission, including answering written requests for direction from the Legislative Services Office, conducting public hearings after districting bills are delivered to the General Assembly, and submitting a report to the General Assembly summarizing information and testimony received by the Commission in the course of the public hearings. 

Directs the Legislative Services Office (Office) to acquire and review information, evaluate facilities, and develop programs in preparation for drawing congressional and legislative redistricting plans after each federal census. Specifies that the Office must obtain, by December 31 of each year ending in zero, Census Bureau information for geographic and political units in North Carolina. Directs the Office to use the data as described. Specifies that the Office must obtain, as soon as possible after January 1 of each year ending in one, Census Bureau population data needed for congressional and legislative districting and use the data to assign a population figure to geographic and political units. Directs the Office to deliver, no later than April 1 of each year ending in one, to the clerks and members of both the Senate and the House three sets of companion bills embodying plans for redistricting both houses of the General Assembly and the Congressional Districts, respectively, prepared in accordance with Article 1B. Details provisions applicable when the required population data is not available by the specified date. Directs the Office to provide information about the plan to persons outside Office staff only as may be required before the Office delivers the bill. Directs the Office to make available to the public, at the earliest feasible time, four types of information after delivering each bill embodying a districting plan to the General Assembly. 

States that a bill embodying a plan submitted by the Office will not be brought to a vote in either chamber less than three legislative days after the report from the Temporary Redistricting Advisory Commission is received and made available to members. Specifies that the bill will be voted under a procedure or rule allowing no amendments except for purely corrective changes. Specifies that if the bill is approved on third reading by the first house, it will quickly be brought to a vote in the second house, and if the bill fails, the respective Chamber can direct by resolution to the Office information regarding the reasons why the plan was not approved. Details the procedures for second and third plans of legislative and congressional districting upon failure of the first plan. 

Requires legislative and congressional districts to be established on the basis of population. Provides that legislative districts will each have a population within 5% of the ideal population for that district. Provides that congressional districts will have a population as nearly as equal to the ideal population and within .1% of the ideal population. Requires legislative and congressional districts to be drawn in a manner that complies with requirements of federal and state law. States that the "whole county" rule will be complied with in a manner consistent with federal law. Provides that division of voting districts will also be minimized. Details additional provisions related to district division, including requiring contiguous territory and reasonably compact districts. Specifies that no district will be drawn to favor any individual, group, or political party, and the districts will not be divided using political affiliation, previous election results, or demographic information unless required by the NC or US Constitution or the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

Applies to redistricting following the return of the 2020 federal census and thereafter.