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SB 2-A — Establishing Congressional Districts

by Senator Galvano

This summary is provided for information only and does not represent the opinion of any Senator, Senate Officer, or Senate Office.

Prepared by: Reapportionment Committee (RE)

SB 2-A (Chapter 2014-255, L.O.F.) establishes Florida’s 27 congressional districts as required by state and federal law and as described in Plan H000C9057. It replaces seven districts established in Chapter 2012-2, L.O.F., two of which were ruled unconstitutional in Romo v. Detzner, consolidated case numbers 2012-CA-412 and 2012-CA-490 in the Circuit Court of the Second Judicial Circuit in and for Leon County, Florida. In its final judgment, the court found infirmaries in Congressional Districts 5 and 10. On August 1, 2014, the court ordered the Legislature to present a remedial map by noon August 15, 2014.

The President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives issued a Joint Proclamation convening the Legislature for the sole and exclusive purpose of considering revisions to Districts 5 and 10 and conforming changes. SB 2-A redraws Congressional Districts 5 and 10, and, as a direct result, makes conforming changes to five other districts—6, 7, 9, 11, and 17—in accordance with the court’s final judgment and the standards in Art. III, s. 20, State Constitution. 

Newly enacted Districts 5 and 10 remedy the particular issues identified in the court’s final judgment. District 5’s “appendage” was absorbed into adjacent District 7, and District 10’s “appendage” was absorbed into adjacent District 9. District 5’s “serpentine” appearance was substantially alleviated by filling the cavity (west of the St. Johns River in Putnam County). As a result, Districts 5, 10, and the surrounding districts are significantly more compact than the prior districts. In the table below, “2012” refers to the prior map (Chapter 2012-2, L.O.F.) and “2014” refers to the districts described in SB 2-A. 

 

Indicia of Compactness CD 5 CD 10
2012 2014 2012 2014
 End-to-end distance (miles) 144.4 142.8 67.2 69.6
 Perimeter (miles) 706.6 582.7 297.6 252.7
 Reock (dispersion ratio) 0.094 0.127 0.394 0.417
 Convex hull ratio 0.286 0.417 0.733 0.826
 Polsby-Popper (perimeter ratio) 0.039 0.075 0.199 0.312

 

Indicia of Compactness
(averages)
CDs 5,6,7,9,10,11,17 All 27 Districts
2012 2014 2012 2014
End-to-end distance (miles)

90.0

88.0

80.7

80.2

Perimeter (miles)

385.2

330.2

300.8

286.5

Reock (dispersion ratio)

0.437

0.442

0.397

0.398

Convex hull ratio

0.692

0.749

0.718

0.733

Polsby-Popper (perimeter ratio)

0.244

0.314

0.299

0.318


District 5 is protected from diminishment of minority voting rights by tier-one of Art. III, s. 20, State Constitution. Changes to improve its compactness (a tier two standard), had the effect of decreasing District 5’s black voting age population to 48.11 percent (from 50.1 percent in Chapter 2012-2, L.O.F., and 49.9 percent in the “benchmark” Chapter 2002-12, L.O.F.). Professional staff conducted a functional analysis, consistent with the method prescribed by the State Supreme Court, and determined that the reduction would not diminish opportunities of African-American voters to elect candidates of their choice. Voter registration, turnout, and election statistics were not considered for evaluating any other district. 

The districts established in this bill apply to the qualification, nomination, and election to the office of representative to the Congress of the United States for any election held after the 2014 general election. The districts do not apply to the office of any representative to the Congress elected in the 2014 general election.

These provisions were approved by the Governor and take effect August 13, 2014.

Vote: Senate 25-12; House 71-38