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Fall is in the air, harvest is approaching, and Husker football is on TV. Something that hasn’t happened for a while, besides Nebraska-Oklahoma football, is a special legislative session for redistricting.
Every ten years, based on data from the U.S. Census, Nebraska must draw new district maps to elect members of the Nebraska Legislature, the U.S. House of Representatives, the Nebraska Public Service Commission, the University of Nebraska Board of Regents, the State Board of Education and to appoint Judges to the Nebraska Supreme Court. The reason a special session had to be called this year is because of a delay in collection and dissemination of census data caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. This special session will be condensed and is expected to wrap up by the end of the month.
As you have no doubt seen in the media, the legislature’s redistricting committee has presented several maps that will be used as a framework for the entire body to debate. Although it is not intended to be, historically this has been a partisan and often contentious process. As you are aware if you watched any of the three hearings (one conducted in each congressional district), most people do not like change. In this case, they are used to the results of the boundaries of their legislative and congressional districts approved during redistricting in 2011, and have grown accustomed to particular voting precincts, city and county divisions, and their current representatives to appointed and elected offices.
My ideal would be that District 38 remain the same as it was three years ago when I ran for this seat, because you are the valued constituents that I was elected to represent. However, since the population is growing in eastern Nebraska and shrinking in the west, I know that it is unrealistic to think that there will not be some changes; both to District 38 as well as likely all the other legislative districts. My efforts during this special session will be to ensure that this will be a fair process that follows the established guidelines and protects, as much as possible, the interests of District 38 and the state as a whole.
I would welcome any comments, questions or ideas you may have on this or any other issue. Please feel free to email me at email@example.com or call my office at 402-471-2732.
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