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New Community Group Forms To Comment On Ohio Redistricting Process

 Katy Shanahan speaking about the new Ohio Citizens' Redistricting Commission. [Kristin Stratman /  WYSO]
Katy Shanahan speaking about the new Ohio Citizens' Redistricting Commission.

A group of Ohio academics, Democratic political party officials, and community members have joined to form an organization they’re calling the Ohio Citizens’ Redistricting Commission.

The group will use community input to generate recommendations on political redistricting. The commission will submit the recommendations as public testimony during the official redistricting process later this year.

Gerrymandered state maps diminish the power of voters, Ellen Green Bush, a group member, said at a virtual commission meeting last week.

“The same legislators keep getting voted into office despite not voting the way constituents want them to do,” she said.

The citizens’ group is modeling how the official redistricting commission should determine district maps, explained Katy Shanaham, state director of All On The Line, an organization working to end gerrymandering.

"Ultimately redistricting is about the people. And that means the people should be at the center of every single conversation we have about what our districts look like now, whether or not they serve our communities and what they need to look like moving forward," Shanahan said.

Ohio’s redistricting commission must vote on new maps by mid-September.

Copyright 2021 WYSO. To see more, visit WYSO.