The Legislative Reapportionment Commission recently approved a revised redistricting plan that reshapes state Senate and House districts based on population shifts over the past decade. Because our region's population growth has outpaced the rest of the state since 2002, the final plan will help ensure local citizens have equal representation and a stronger voice in state government. The new maps will go into effect in 2014.
In our region, the redistricting plan is very similar to the proposal passed by the Commission in December. I am very pleased that this plan would make relatively few changes to the 36th District, allowing me to continue to represent many of the same communities I have worked with over the past six years in the General Assembly. The following municipalities would remain in the 36th District under the revised plan: Brecknock Township, Caernarvon Township, Clay Township, Earl Township, East Cocalico Township, East Earl Township, East Hempfield Township, Elizabeth Township, Ephrata Township, Penn Township, Rapho Township, Warwick Township, West Cocalico Township, West Earl Township and West Hempfield Township, Adamstown Borough, Akron Borough, Columbia Borough, Denver Borough, Ephrata Borough, Lititz Borough, Manheim Borough, Mount Joy Borough, Mountville Borough, New Holland Borough and Terre Hill Borough.
The plan would also add the Lancaster County municipalities of Conoy Township, East Donegal Township, Mount Joy Township, West Donegal Township, East Petersburg Borough, Elizabethtown Borough and Marietta Borough. I look forward to meeting with residents of all of these communities so I can ensure their interests are properly represented in Harrisburg.
The plan would remove the following municipalities from the 36th District due to population shifts: the Lancaster County municipalities of East Lampeter Township, Leacock Township, Paradise Township, Salisbury Township, Upper Leacock Township and Christiana Borough and the Chester County municipalities of Honey Brook Township, West Fallowfield Township, West Sadsbury Township, Atglen Borough and Honey Brook Borough. It has been a privilege to represent these communities during my time in the Senate, and I am very grateful for the numerous personal connections I have made with residents and elected officials in these communities.
The original redistricting plan approved by the Commission in December was ruled to be unconstitutional due to the number of municipalities that were divided in other parts of the state. I believe the revised plan addresses many of these concerns by splitting fewer municipalities and making House and Senate districts more compact. Final details of the new redistricting plan are available online at www.redistricting.state.pa.us.
General Assembly Will Not Meet in Lame Duck Session
Legislative leaders recently announced that the General Assembly will not meet in a lame duck session after the November elections. This will be the third consecutive legislative session in which the Senate does not convene for a lame duck session.
The days between the November election and November 30 are known as a lame duck session because some members of the General Assembly are allowed to vote on legislation despite the fact that they will not stand for re-election. This lack of accountability often means lame duck sessions serve as a breeding ground for bad public policy. I am very pleased that the Legislature will not expose the public to these risks in a lame duck session this year.
For more information on issues of importance to Lancaster and Chester County residents, please visit my website at senatorbrubaker.com.