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Ariz. taxpayers’ redistricting legal cost: $1.4M

Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission Chair Mathis, left, and Vice Chair Scott Freeman laugh during discussions Dec. 7 in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Matt York)

Arizona’s recent redrawing of its congressional and legislative districts is racking up big legal bills for state government. That’s largely because of lawsuits challenging the redistricting commission’s politically charged work.

The Arizona Republic reports that records indicate that the costs so far total $1.4 million, including $1.3 million paid by the commission for itself or its appointed members.

However, several Republican-backed lawsuits seeking to overturn the maps drawn by the commission are still being contested in court, so more costs will be incurred.

Those lawsuits center on various disputed claims. Those include that the commission favored Democrats and gave short shrift to constitutionally mandated redistricting criteria.

The commission was created by voters in 2000 to take redistricting out of the hands of the Legislature and the governor.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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