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Thu January 19, 2012
Legislature Finalizes New Districts, Still Wrestling With Congressional Map
By Kenneth Colston
Frankfort, KY – New legislative and judicial districts are just a signature away from becoming law.
The General Assembly has given final approval to House Bill 1, sending the new maps to the governor s desk.
The battle over redistricting has been brutal. It ended with members of the minority parties in each chamber drawn into unfavorable districts. The man in charge of redistricting in the House, Representative Mike Cherry, says everyone is a little upset in the aftermath.
There s been a lot of rhetoric from both ends of the Capitol on that," Cherry said on the House floor. "And dissatisfaction can be found on both sides of the aisle in both chambers.
House Bill 1 is unfavorable to Democrats in the state Senate and to Republicans in the state House. And House Republican Leader Jeff Hoover says while the maps may be final, the fighting is far from over.
This vote today will not end this issue because the people of Kentucky deserve better and we re going to make sure they understand the process," Hoover said in a floor speech. "They understand what happened and they will be more fully educated going forward. And this vote today will not end this matter.
Lawmakers are still battling over new Congressional lines. House Speaker Greg Stumbo has advocated for a plan that would allow members of each party to win three of the districts. Currently, Republicans hold four Congressional seats in Kentucky. Members of the House and Senate are meeting in closed conference committee to work out their differences. Senate President David Williams says he hopes the process moves quickly.