Maine House Passes Bipartisan Legislative District Maps
AUGUSTA — The Maine House on Wednesday gave final approval to bipartisan maps redrawing district lines for the Legislature and County Commission. The maps were approved by a final vote of 133 to 11.
The maps were recommended unanimously by the bipartisan Apportionment Commission last week.
“Lawmakers have shown that even on the most political matters, we come together to support a common sense compromise,” said Speaker of the House Mark Eves. “We will need that common sense approach as we wrap all our work in the Legislature.”
Maine law requires legislative district and county commission maps be updated every 10 years based on population changes. The new maps are based on the 2010 census, which shows a shift in population from Northern to Southern Maine.
The ideal House district size is 8,797 people, while the ideal Senate district is 37,953. The 151 House districts and the 35 Senate districts are all within plus or minus 5 percent of that ideal population size.
“The maps are fair and consistent with changes in Maine’s population,” said Rep. Jeff McCabe of Skowhegan, the assistant House Majority Leader who served on the Apportionment Commission. “We worked to get the job done with the least disruption in legislative districts as possible under the law.”
The Maine Constitution requires the plan to be approved by a two-thirds vote of the legislature by June 11. If a two-thirds vote cannot be achieved, redistricting proposals are sent to the State Supreme Judicial Court for resolution.
The maps face further votes in both the House and Senate.