By Shields H.J.R. No. 85 75R3245 JSA-D A JOINT RESOLUTION 1-1 proposing a constitutional amendment to create the Texas 1-2 Redistricting Commission and to revise the constitutional 1-3 redistricting provisions. 1-4 BE IT RESOLVED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS: 1-5 SECTION 1. Article III, Texas Constitution, is amended by 1-6 adding Section 28a to read as follows: 1-7 Sec. 28a. (a) The Texas Redistricting Commission exercises 1-8 the legislative authority of this state to adopt redistricting 1-9 plans for the election of the Texas House of Representatives, Texas 1-10 Senate, and members of the United States House of Representatives 1-11 elected from this state. Districts for those legislative bodies 1-12 may not be established or changed except as provided by this 1-13 section. 1-14 (b) The commission consists of five members selected as 1-15 follows: 1-16 (1) one member appointed by the lieutenant governor; 1-17 (2) one member appointed by the senate leader of the 1-18 party caucus of the senators belonging to the political party, 1-19 other than the political party to which the lieutenant governor 1-20 belonged when elected to that office, that has the most members in 1-21 the Texas Senate; 1-22 (3) one member appointed by the speaker of the house 1-23 of representatives; 1-24 (4) one member appointed by the house leader of the 2-1 party caucus of the representatives belonging to the political 2-2 party, other than the political party to which the speaker of the 2-3 house belonged when elected to the house, that has the most members 2-4 in the Texas House of Representatives; and 2-5 (5) one member selected as provided by Subsection (c) 2-6 of this section who serves as presiding officer of the commission. 2-7 (c) The members of the commission appointed under 2-8 Subsections (b)(1), (2), (3), and (4) of this section shall appoint 2-9 the fifth member of the commission from a list consisting of the 2-10 nominees submitted by the four initial members of the commission. 2-11 The initial members of the commission from each political party 2-12 shall jointly nominate two persons. If one person is nominated by 2-13 the commission members of more than one political party, that 2-14 person is automatically selected as the fifth member of the 2-15 commission. If more than one person is nominated by the commission 2-16 members of more than one political party, one of those nominees 2-17 shall be chosen by lot as the fifth member of the commission. If 2-18 no person is nominated by the commission members of more than one 2-19 political party, the four members of the commission shall appoint 2-20 the fifth member from the list of nominees by secret ballot. A 2-21 nominee is appointed if the person receives the votes of three 2-22 members. If the fifth member of the commission is not appointed by 2-23 the other members of the commission on or before the seventh day 2-24 after the first day on which the first four members of the 2-25 commission have all been appointed and taken the constitutional 2-26 oath of office, the governor shall select the fifth member of the 2-27 commission from the list of nominees made under this subsection. 3-1 (d) The members of the commission appointed under 3-2 Subsections (b)(1), (2), (3), and (4) of this section shall be 3-3 appointed as soon as practicable, but not later than the 10th day, 3-4 after the date the legislature convenes in regular session in each 3-5 year ending in one. The person making each of those appointments 3-6 shall certify the appointment to the secretary of state not later 3-7 than the fifth day after the date the appointment is made. The 3-8 term of a member of the commission expires on the day the 3-9 legislature convenes in regular session in the next year ending in 3-10 one after the year in which the member is appointed. 3-11 (e) A member of the commission appointed under Subsection 3-12 (b)(1), (2), (3), or (4) of this section must be a former member of 3-13 the supreme court or court of criminal appeals who is not serving 3-14 as an elected judge at the time of the person's appointment. If 3-15 there are fewer than four former members of one of those courts 3-16 available and willing to serve, a member of the commission 3-17 appointed under Subsection (b)(1), (2), (3), or (4) of this section 3-18 may be a former judge of a court of appeals of this state who is 3-19 not serving as an elected judge at the time of appointment. The 3-20 member of the commission appointed under Subsection (c) of this 3-21 section must be a former member of the supreme court who is not 3-22 serving as an elected judge at the time of the appointment. If no 3-23 former member of the supreme court is available and willing to 3-24 serve, the member of the commission appointed under Subsection (c) 3-25 of this section may be a former member of the court of criminal 3-26 appeals or a court of appeals of this state who is not serving as 3-27 an elected judge at the time of the appointment. For purposes of 4-1 this section, a person is not considered a former member of the 4-2 supreme court, the court of criminal appeals, or a court of appeals 4-3 unless the person was elected to that office. 4-4 (f) A person is not eligible to serve on the commission if 4-5 the person: 4-6 (1) is a member of the legislature or the United 4-7 States House of Representatives; 4-8 (2) is an employee or officer of: 4-9 (A) the legislature, either house of the 4-10 legislature, a member of the legislature, or any office or agency 4-11 in the legislative branch; or 4-12 (B) the United States House of Representatives 4-13 or a member of the house of representatives; or 4-14 (3) has served in a position described by Subdivision 4-15 (1) or (2) of this subsection within three years preceding the date 4-16 the person is appointed to the commission. 4-17 (g) A vacancy on the commission is filled in the same manner 4-18 as the original appointment to the vacant position. If the vacancy 4-19 occurs before the commission adopts the initial redistricting plans 4-20 the board is required to adopt or at any other time when the 4-21 commission is convened, the vacancy shall be filled not later than 4-22 the fifth day after the date the vacancy occurs. If a vacancy 4-23 occurs when the commission is not convened, the vacancy may not be 4-24 filled until the commission reconvenes, in which event it shall be 4-25 filled in the same manner as the original appointment to the vacant 4-26 position not later than the fifth day after the date the commission 4-27 reconvenes. 5-1 (h) The commission shall convene as soon as practicable 5-2 after all five members of the commission have been initially 5-3 appointed. A majority of the members of the commission constitutes 5-4 a quorum. 5-5 (i) The commission shall hold its meetings at times and 5-6 places convenient for the attendance and participation of the 5-7 general public. The commission shall hold at least three public 5-8 hearings in different parts of the state before adopting a plan. 5-9 The commission shall, to the extent practicable in the 5-10 circumstances, consider plans and districts submitted by members of 5-11 the general public. 5-12 (j) A redistricting plan or modification of a redistricting 5-13 plan is adopted by a vote of not less than three members of the 5-14 commission. The commission shall file a plan or modification 5-15 adopted by the commission with the secretary of state. A plan 5-16 adopted by the commission may not be modified or superseded before 5-17 the publication of the next federal decennial census except as 5-18 provided by Subsection (m) of this section or by appropriate court 5-19 order. 5-20 (k) The commission shall adopt a redistricting plan for each 5-21 legislative body for which it is required to adopt a plan not 5-22 later than September 1 of the year in which the federal decennial 5-23 census counts for this state are delivered to the appropriate state 5-24 officials, unless those counts are delivered after June 1, in which 5-25 event the commission shall adopt those plans not later than the 5-26 90th day after the date the census counts are delivered. Any 5-27 member of the commission may propose a plan for formal 6-1 consideration by the commission. If the commission does not adopt 6-2 a plan for one of those legislative bodies in the time provided, 6-3 the supreme court not later than the 60th day after the last date 6-4 provided by this section for commission action shall adopt a plan 6-5 for the appropriate legislative body. If one or more plans 6-6 formally considered by the commission for that legislative body 6-7 received two votes, the supreme court shall adopt one of those 6-8 plans as the state's plan. Otherwise, the supreme court shall 6-9 adopt a plan from among any of the plans for that legislative body 6-10 formally considered by the commission. 6-11 (l) After adopting the initial plans the commission is 6-12 required to adopt, the commission shall adjourn and suspend 6-13 operations until the commission reconvenes, if necessary, under 6-14 Subsection (m) of this section. When the commission is adjourned, 6-15 the lieutenant governor and speaker of the house, under the 6-16 direction of the presiding officer of the commission, shall provide 6-17 for maintenance of the commission's records and for the performance 6-18 of other functions related to the commission. 6-19 (m) The commission shall reconvene to modify a plan or adopt 6-20 a new plan as soon as practicable whenever a redistricting plan 6-21 previously adopted under this section has been held to be invalid 6-22 or unenforceable by a court or other appropriate authority. In 6-23 modifying a redistricting plan, the commission must comply with all 6-24 applicable standards imposed by this section, other provisions of 6-25 this constitution, and laws enacted under this section but is not 6-26 restricted to modifications necessary to correct legal 6-27 deficiencies. After adopting a modification or replacement plan, 7-1 the commission shall adjourn. 7-2 (n) In a redistricting plan or modification of a plan 7-3 adopted by the commission: 7-4 (1) each district must contain a population as nearly 7-5 equal as practicable to the population of any other district in the 7-6 plan, consistent with federal law and this constitution; and 7-7 (2) to the extent reasonable, each district must 7-8 contain contiguous territory and be compact. 7-9 (o) The commission may not draw a redistricting plan 7-10 purposely to favor or discriminate against any racial, language, or 7-11 ethnic group. 7-12 (p) To the extent practicable and consistent with other 7-13 requirements of this section or other law, the commission shall 7-14 draw districts to preserve continuity of representation from one 7-15 plan to the next. 7-16 (q) The legislature shall appropriate funds to enable the 7-17 commission to carry out its duties and shall provide the commission 7-18 with reasonable staff, office space, equipment, and other 7-19 facilities to enable the commission to perform its duties. The 7-20 commission may request assistance from any state office or agency 7-21 or from a political subdivision of this state, and the office, 7-22 agency, or political subdivision shall provide that assistance to 7-23 the extent practicable. 7-24 (r) This section takes effect January 1, 2001. While this 7-25 section is in effect, Section 28 of this article has no effect, and 7-26 the Legislative Redistricting Board may not exercise any power 7-27 under this constitution. The commission established by this 8-1 section shall exercise the duties of the Legislative Redistricting 8-2 Board under Section 7a, Article V, of this constitution. 8-3 (s) This section expires January 1, 2011, unless before that 8-4 date the legislature by resolution adopted by each house and 8-5 approved under Section 15, Article IV, of this constitution 8-6 provides that this section shall become a permanent part of this 8-7 constitution. If the legislature so provides that this section 8-8 shall become a permanent part of this constitution, on January 1, 8-9 2011: 8-10 (1) this subsection expires; and 8-11 (2) Section 28 of this article is repealed. 8-12 SECTION 2. Section 26a, Article III, Texas Constitution, is 8-13 repealed. 8-14 SECTION 3. This proposed constitutional amendment shall be 8-15 submitted to the voters at an election to be held November 4, 1997. 8-16 The ballot shall be printed to permit voting for or against the 8-17 following proposition: "The constitutional amendment to reform the 8-18 state's redistricting process and to establish the Texas 8-19 Redistricting Commission to draw legislative and congressional 8-20 districts."