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Redistricting not a joint effort

Published December 03. 2011 09:01AM

Dear Editor:

As a voter and resident of Summit Hill I would like to thank Representative Heffley for spelling out what the PA Constitution states about redistricting. However I take issue with his intentional misrepresentation of the facts regarding reapportionment. Rep. Heffley stated in this newspaper, "It is my understanding that this (redistricting) was agreed to by both Republican and Democratic members serving on the Legislative Reapportionment Commission." I find your statement touting bipartisan support to be troubling.

According to the Legislative Reapportionment Meeting from October 31st, the democratic members of the commission expressed serious opposition to the redistricting plan, which was presented only 30 minutes prior to the meeting. According to House Minority Leader Dermody and Senate Minority Leader Costa,

1) "The reapportionment map the House Republicans have proposed bears very little resemblance to the good-faith negotiations of the past several months.

2) We have a highly partisan plan, presented by Republicans, that has not been drawn up in a fair and equitable manner and we have been given an inadequate amount of time to review it.

3) The Republican Map does not reflect appropriate population change in the northeast.

4) The Republican Map is in violation of longstanding court rulings.

5) The Republican Map violates the one man one vote edict and the Federal Voting Rights Act."

Those are just some of the concerns voiced at the October meeting; that hardly sounds like Bipartisan support. In fact, votes taken on the issues regarding the plan saw the 3 Republicans voting to accept the plan and the 2 Democrats opposing the plan.

Representative Heffley your correspondence does shed light on this round of redistricting; it appears to be an effort for Republican Incumbents, such as yourself, to strengthen their standing in the next election cycle. Your claim that this has been a joint effort by Republicans and Democrats is blatantly false and it took very little effort to uncover the true nature of this process. I'm sure, as you stated, that you would like to represent Carbon County in its entirety however I know one community that does not share that sentiment.


Greg Kosciolek

Summit Hill resident

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