Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Cost to Taxpayers for Current Redistricting Process?: $2 Million+/ Cost to Taxpayers for Redistricting Reform? $0

Press Release
July 17, 2013

Jay Heck – 608/256-2686

Cost to Taxpayers for Current Redistricting Process?: $2 Million+
Cost to Taxpayers for Redistricting Reform Like Iowa Has? $0

The cost to Wisconsin taxpayers for the 2011 redistricting process - the most partisan, uncompetitive, secretive and expensive in Wisconsin's history -- is $2 million and rising. And for what? Wisconsin now has zero competitive congressional seats. That's right. All eight current U.S. House districts in our state are considered "safe" for the political party currently occupying them. In the State Assembly, just 15 of 99 fall into the "competitive" category. In the State Senate -- just three (or possibly four) of 33 seats are competitive.

According to fiscal estimates filed by the Wisconsin Legislative Reference Bureau and the Government Accountability Board, the cost to taxpayers for redistricting if Senate Bill 163 and Assembly Bill 185 were in place instead of the current system?

Zero. Nada. Nothing. And we would have a non-partisan entity drawing the state legislative and congressional district boundary lines in 2021 instead of partisan legislators and their high-priced, secretive, partisan lawyers.

This past Sunday, the Wisconsin State Journal issued this excellent editorial in support of the Iowa Model for redistricting reform, which CC/WI strongly supports and had a key role in uniting pro-reform legislators behind earlier this year.

And earlier this month, CC/WI asked Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Editorial Page Editor David Haynes to ask Governor Scott Walker, in their editorial board meeting with him, if he supported redistricting reform for 2021 and in having the non-partisan Legislative Reference Bureau draw the new boundary lines -- as is done in Iowa and which is embodied in Assembly Bill 185/Senate Bill 163. Watch this video for the Governor's response.

And late in June, the Beloit Daily News ran this excellent article detailing the comments of area legislators about redistricting reform.

Below is the listing of all of the Wisconsin State Representatives and State Senators (in alphabetical order) who have expressed public support thus far for SB 163/AB 185 to date. The name of the legislator is followed by the Assembly or State Senate District they represent and the city/town in which the legislator resides:

If your State Representative and/or State Senator are on this list, drop them a line and thank them for their support and tell them it is a priority for you and for Wisconsin.

If your State Representative or/and your State Senator are not on the above list, please contact them and tell them to support Senate Bill 163/Assembly Bill 185!

If you are not sure who your State Representative and/or your State Senator are go here.

Redistricting reform is one of our top priorities and we will continue to keep you updated on its progress.


Jay Heck, Executive Director
Common Cause in Wisconsin
152 W. Johnson St., Suite 212
Madison, WI 53703


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