Redistricting has been a highly anticipated topic going into the 2022 session. Ahead of the General Assembly convening on Tuesday, the House Republican caucus released their new maps which they plan to pass quickly next week.
At the press conference Thursday, House Speaker David Osborne said his caucus has been working for months on these maps to come up with a plan that meets all constitutional requirements and pitted few incumbents against each other. However, there will be some match ups among current representatives as a result of the maps.
The legislature is constitutionally required to rebalance the district maps based on most recent census data, and Osborne noted there have been dramatic population shifts over the last 10 years in Kentucky.
Republican incumbents Norma Kirk McCormick and Bobby McCool will see their districts overlap in a way that will cause them to run against each other in eastern Kentucky, while fellow GOP representatives in western Kentucky, Jim Gooch and Lynn Bechler, face a similar issue.
Two sets of Louisville Democratic incumbents, Mary Lou Marzian and Josie Raymond, as well as Lisa Wilner and Makenzie Cantrell, will also see this issue.
Osborne said the group has worked hard to ensure no precincts were split in any areas of the state, and he also noted Hopkins, Henderson, and Barren Counties will all be single county districts under the new maps.
As for how quickly the plans will be passed, Osborne said Rep. Jerry Miller will be the primary sponsor of the bill that will be introduced on Tuesday and the General Assembly intends to work on Saturday to get the plans passed within the first week.
The state Senate has not yet introduced their plan for their own districts or the plans for new Congressional district maps. Osborne said he expects those to be released on Tuesday.
Changes to the deadline for candidates to file to run will also be proposed next week. The House speaker said the working date for the new filing deadline is January 25 rather than within the first week of January.
The General Assembly is set to convene Tuesday, January 4. Stay tuned to The Bottom Line for updates throughout the legislative session.