Illinois state legislative districts await a federal court decision after Democratic majorities in the Illinois House and Senate passed redrawn legislative maps late Wednesday during a special session.
Meanwhile, congressional districts remain in limbo with state lawmakers expected to take up the matter in late October.
After the August release of Census 2020 data, state legislators returned last week to redraw state legislative districts that passed in May and were signed by Gov. J.B. Pritzker. Those maps, based on population estimates from the American Community Survey rather than Census data, were challenged in federal court by Illinois Republican leaders and the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund.
“We anticipate the new legislative maps will be part of that legal case,” said Kevin Semlow, Illinois Farm Bureau director of state legislation. Semlow explained the groups claimed the first maps were not constitutional because they weren’t based on 2020 Census data and a few other reasons.
Historically, lawmakers have used census data for redistricting every 10 years.
The district boundaries, contained in SB 927, passed with a 73-43 vote in the House and a 40-18 vote in the Senate and will be sent to Gov. J.B. Pritzker for his review and action. Summaries of district populations were included in HR 443 and passed with a 73-43 vote in the House. Semlow explained the resolution only needed approval in the House where it was introduced.
The redrawn House and Senate district maps may be viewed on Google Maps. Individuals may search by address to learn the district it falls in.
While the Illinois Constitution set a June 30 deadline for drawing of state legislative district maps, it contains no deadline for approval of congressional district maps.
“We have to draw congressional maps, so we’ll be back in October to pass the maps,” Senate President Don Harmon, D-Oak Park, told reporters at a press conference.