COLUMBUS – State Senator Matt Huffman (R-Lima) and Ohio House Speaker Pro Tempore Kirk Schuring (R-Canton) today announced updates to Sub. Senate Joint Resolution 5, a proposal to reform the way congressional district lines are drawn in Ohio.

The goals of the plan remain the same: to constitutionalize congressional map drawing standards, to require bipartisan support, and to significantly reduce the splitting of counties and cities. Adjustments made today in the proposal are a result of numerous discussions in hopes of reaching a solution with bipartisan support.

“By defining a process and ensuring bipartisan support, we are proposing a historic change in how Ohio draws its congressional district lines,” said Huffman, sponsor of S.J.R. 5. “As part of our good faith effort to reach a solution, we are making substantial changes today based on our discussions with Democrat leadership and feedback we have heard from coalition leaders and the public. I believe we are providing the people of Ohio with a plan that is both fair and responsible.”

Changes to Sub. Senate Joint Resolution 5 include:

 

  • Increasing the required level of bipartisan support to at least 50% vote of the minority party on a 10-year map passed by the General Assembly.
  • Additionally increasing the required level of bipartisan support from a 1/5 to a 1/3 vote of the minority party on ratifying a 4-year map into a 10-year map.
  • Enhancing protections for regions, counties and cities by keeping counties from being split more than twice. In fact, the updated plan calls for at least 65 counties to be kept whole and allows only five counties to be split twice. The proposal also requires the cities of Cleveland and Cincinnati to be kept whole inside districts, and Columbus to be the base of its own district.
  • Restoring the governor’s ability to veto a map.
  • Maintaining Ohioans’ ability to file a referendum against a congressional map.
  • Clarifying that a court challenge can be brought to an entire map not just individual districts.
  • Eliminating strict equal population requirements for districts.


A side-by-side comparison of today’s changes can be found here.

The next public hearing on Sub. Senate Joint Resolution 5 is scheduled for 10 a.m. on Tuesday, January 30 in the Senate’s Government Oversight and Reform committee.

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Press Contacts
Ohio Senate: John Fortney, 614.995.1280, John.Fortney@ohiosenate.gov
Ohio House: Brad Miller, 614.466.8759, Brad.Miller@ohiohouse.gov

 
 
 
  
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