The Alaska Redistricting Board has adopted six proposals that will be part of public review and testimony beginning next week.
There are two maps created by the board, and four maps brought forward by third parties, which include:
- Coalition of Doyon, Ltd., Tanana Chiefs Conference, Fairbanks Native Association, Sealaska, and Ahtna, with a map that strengthens Native representation.
- Alaskans for Fair and Equitable Redistricting (AFFER), a group of Republicans.
- Alaskans for Fair Redistricting (AFFR), a group of Democrats.
- The Senate Minority Caucus, Democrats in the Senate.
Today the board heard testimony from various individuals regarding the maps that will create new political boundaries across Alaska:
- Former Sen. Cathy Giessel of Anchorage, a Republican, wants the board to reject the map provided by the Republican group AFFER, at least as the lines pertain to what is now District 31.
- William Stat (sp) of Fairbanks said to be careful drawing lines outside of boroughs.
- Gail Lindemore (sp) said it was not acceptable to move Nikiski on the Kenai to the South Anchorage district.
- Yarrow Silver, a nonpartisan voter, was upset about proposed maps, but like the Democrat maps the best,
- Senators Tom Begich, Jessie Kiehl, and Scott Kawasaki, testifying online, make some changes to their Senate Minority Democrats’ map that incorporates Houston city limits into one district.
- Sen. Tom Begich said he is receiving a lot of questions about decisions made regarding ANCSA regions, and says court precedent states that borough boundaries are more important.
The maps submitted by Alaskans for Fair and Equitable Redistricting took criticism from Board member Nicole Borromeo, who said the Southeast Alaska district lines violate court precedent. The group said it had presented a new map but the board didn’t have it for the meeting.
“We were pleased to hear from Alaskans from every region of the state and replace our initial maps with new and improved versions three and four, which better reflect the socio-economic integration characteristics of each region,” said Board Member Nicole Borromeo, speaking about the two maps offered by the board. “We look forward to hearing feedback from Alaskans on our new draft maps, as well as the four adopted third-party draft maps, as we present them in public meetings in communities across the state.”
The only third party plan that was viewed as unacceptable for the next phase of public review was the one provided by the Alaska Democratic Party. The Republican Party provided no map.
The third parties who provided maps had been making corrections to them since Friday’s public testimony, but that caused a bit of confusion in Monday’s meeting.
Although the maps are not yet available for public review, they will be shortly at this link.
The deadline to adopt a final state legislative map is Nov. 10, 2021.