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Commissioners eye free mapping software, say it could be used differently than creators intended (access required)

Although all five members of Arizona’s Independent Redistricting Commission have said they're either aware of, or had logged into, the online mapping software that was released to the public recently by the Arizona Competitive Districts Coalition, which has a stated goal of increasing the number of “competitive districts,” they don't all agree about how it will be used.

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IRC hires deputy director; attorneys and map consultant up next (access required)

Although the five-person panel has been fully constituted since early March, Arizona’s Independent Redistricting Commission will only be ready to begin their work recasting Arizona’s political districts once they’ve finished making key staff hires.

And given the pace the commission is moving toward being fully staffed, it could be early- to mid-June before commissioners begin to consider the new district lines.

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Two remain for IRC executive director post (access required)

During a closed-door executive session last week, Arizona’s Independent Redistricting Commission selected the final two candidates vying to serve as the agency’s executive director.

The commission interviewed five candidates, selected from among several dozen more, for several hours during the private April 14 meeting, then chose two of the five for additional interviews April 20 – this time in public.

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Redistricting panel weighs disclosure requirements (access required)

The word “transparency” gets tossed around a lot these days. Activists demand it and politicians promise it. As Arizona’s Independent Redistricting Commission prepares to redraw the lines that will define the state’s congressional and legislative districts, exactly what level of transparency the commission will achieve remains unclear.

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Critics say partisan fights take new shape in ‘independent’ redistricting

Placing the “I” word in front of Redistricting Commission doesn’t mean it’s really independent.

Now that the commission is fully constituted, they'll soon begin redrawing the state's legislative and congressional lines. At stake is the state's political landscape for the next ten years. And while most everyone agrees on the gravity of task, disagreements abound on just how "independent" the panel can be.

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IRC budget based on experience and guesswork (access required)

The last statement James Huntwork made as a member of the first Independent Redistricting Commission in his last meeting in June 2009 was that the next IRC would need “a lot of money.”

How much money the newly seated IRC will need is a mystery.

But the thinking of those involved with the first one is that the legal disputes, which consumed so much money last time, will be fewer this time.

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