ATLANTA – Seven private citizens would draw election boundaries instead of politicians under legislation introduced Wednesday by Sen. Hardie Davis, D-Augusta.
He said he isn’t motivated by how redistricting was handled last year for the legislature or the Augusta Commission, only public frustration.
“We’ve got a unique opportunity in advance of the 2020 redistricting,” he said. “I think the citizens across the great state of Georgia have always wanted to have the opportunity to have the best representation from their communities. For so long, this has been a political process that truly needs to be depoliticized.”
Senate Bill 122 and Senate Resolution 222 would set up a referendum for voters to decide on amending the constitution to create the mechanism for the redistricting commission. They require approval from two-thirds of the House and Senate first.
Similar proposals have gone nowhere in the General Assembly. Most notably, then-Gov. Sonny Perdue proposed a citizens commission to conduct redistricting, but his fellow Republicans running the legislature ignored it.
Davis isn’t certain his idea will ever be voted on, but he thinks it will at least be the subject of a public hearing in a Senate committee.
“What happens beyond the hearing process, I’m not sure at this point,” he said.