Bill Adding More Transparency to New Redistricting Commission Advances

Feb 3, 2021

Last year was a census year. That means this year Virginia is redrawing legislative districts. And a piece of legislation seeks to add transparency, and accessibility, to the process.

With House Bill 2082, Virginia’s new Redistricting Commission can meet virtually, as many organizations are this year. The bill makes sure they’ll be open to the public, too.

 

If you’re interested in a virtual meeting, but can’t log on, this bill would also make sure you have a video recording of the proceedings posted online. The data members use to draw new district lines would have to be posted, too.  

 

Before the commission proposes a plan for new voting districts, it will have to have at least three open hearings for public comments. There will be three hearings before the commission votes on a plan, too. 

 

Accessibility is also considered by this bill. Videos will have transcripts for those who have difficulty hearing. And if a locality has 10,000 people who only understand a language other than English, authorities will have to make sure they are included in the process. For example, they’ll have to advertise in those languages about the meetings.  

 

Wednesday morning a House committee moved the bill forward by a vote of 13 to 8.

 

This report, provided by Virginia Public Radio, was made possible with support from the Virginia Education Association.