Traditionally, state legislatures have been responsible for redistricting for state legislative and congressional districts. Since the landmark Supreme Court decisions of the 1960s that established the one-person, one-vote principle, a number of states have shifted redistricting of state legislative district lines from the legislature to a board or commission. There are pros and cons to removing the process from the traditional legislative process to a commission. Reformers often mistakenly assume that commissions will be less partisan than legislatures when conducting redistricting but that depends largely on the design of the board or commission.
13 states have a commission with primary responsibility for drawing a plan for state legislative districts. 5 states have an advisory commission that may assist the legislature with drawing the district lines and 5 states have a backup commission that will make the decision if the legislature is unable to agree.
NCSL – Redistricting Commissions: State Legislative Plans
A suit challenging an adopted redistricting plan may be brought at any time under the federal or state constitution or federal law. Before 2013, Texas and certain other states were required to obtain federal pre clearance of any redistricting plans before they could be implemented. In 2013, the applicable provision of the federal Voting Rights Act was held invalid by the U.S. Supreme Court.
- Create a primary non-partisan redistricting commission that could have the responsibility of redistricting for legislative bodies
- Leave the redistricting process as it currently is
Code – Texas Constitution
Article – 3 Legislative Department
Section – 28 Time for Apportionment; Apportionment by Legislative Redistricting Board