Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Redrawing state's congressional boundaries put in the hands of federal judge 

A federal judge in Brooklyn will redraw the state’s congressional boundaries by March 12, the jurist announced Monday.

Magistrate Roanne Mann is acting in the role of a special master after the chief justice of the U.S. Court of Appeals ordered a panel of judges to draw up new congressional districts in response to a lawsuit filed late last year in Brooklyn Federal Court.

With candidate petitioning slated to begin on March 20, Mann is moving quickly to have the redistricting in place based on the latest census data and input from experts — including Columbia University Law Prof. Nathaniel Persily.

“Drawing congressional lines is of the utmost urgency,” said lawyer Richard Mancino who filed the suit which contends the Legislature has been unable to put forth a reasonable plan.

“We disagree with our colleagues that there is ‘plenty of time’ to get their acts together,” Mancino said.

Representatives for Gov. Cuomo, Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver and Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos had no comment.

All the parties were said to be negotiating, though no immediate progress was reported.

An Assembly official said the Democrats’ intention is to submit a plan to Mann on Wednesday if a deal with the state Senate is not reached before then.

Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/redrawing-state-congressional-boundaries-put-hands-federal-judge-article-1.1029630#ixzz1nhyQ1rMb

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