News

Push On to Change Legislative District Map Process

Push On to Change Legislative District Map Process

Photo: Newsradio WTAX

Another day, another stack of petitions is arriving in Springfield for a constitutional amendment.

A day after the term limits petitions were filed, the independent maps petitions departed the Chicago campaign headquarters on their way to the Board of Elections.

“We’ve been working over the past nine months to gather signatures all over the state, with a lot of volunteers, thousands and thousands of volunteers, and then a very large paid effort where we had field organizers out six and seven days a week gathering signatures,” campaign manager Michael Kolenc said this (Thursday) morning before the petitions, bound in a stack 27 feet long, were loaded into a tractor-trailer for the ride to Springfield.

Kolenc says there are 532,264 signatures, with 298,000 valid signatures needed to qualify for the ballot. About one-third were gathered by volunteers.

The measure, if it’s approved, would establish an independent, largely non-political commission to draw districts for the General Assembly every 10 years. As it is now, the maps are drawn either directly by, or under the influence of, the lawmakers themselves.

This effort has the support of Lt. Gov. Sheila Simon, even if it means some of the power of the Democratic Party will be shrunk. “What I want to have is a democracy that works well in the state of Illinois, and having maps that make sense for citizens is an important step in getting there,” she said.

Kolenc says he expects a line-by-line signature challenge, and a legal challenge as to whether this measure meets the requirements for a petition-drive constitutional amendment.

Recent Headlines

in Local

Madigan Files Pension Appeal

state_capitol_3

Attorney General Lisa Madigan has filed official notice with the Supreme Court that the state will appeal a ruling that Illinois' landmark pension overhaul is unconstitutional.

in Local

Chicago Couple Sues Aviation Company Over Crash

local_news_generic

A Chicago couple is suing the owner of a small cargo plane that crashed into their home.

in Local

$4.5 Million Headed To Illinois Food Banks; Springfield Included

foodbank

The state is giving nearly $4.5 million to eight food banks across Illinois for modernization.

in Local

Flyers: Know Your Rights!

airport

Financial hurt for airlines who keep you on the tarmac