Michigan’s first-ever independent redistricting process
How can you get involved?
For the first time ever, Michigan’s legislative redistricting process is being conducted by a group of independent, randomly selected citizens instead of by lawmakers and special interest groups in Lansing.
After Michigan voters overwhelmingly passed Proposal 2 headed up by Voters Not Politicians in 2018, the Michigan Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission (MICRC) is now responsible for drawing the legislative districts that will be used for the next decade in Michigan, and the Commission is asking for public input.
The MICRC, made up of four Republicans, four Democrats, and five Independents, has begun holding public hearings in cities across Michigan, listening to the input of community members as to how they think new districts should be drawn in order to fairly represent the communities within them. So how can you get involved and make your voice heard?
The MICRC is seeking public input, but what exactly are they looking for?
With the redistricting process being conducted by public citizens, not politicians, for the first time, the Commission is seeking input from you as to how the new districts should be drawn.
The Commission is specifically looking for input from “communities of interest,” or communities where residents share cultural, historical, or economical characteristics and interests. Communities of interest, however, can be brought together around a common environmental issue or threat, such as the communities near Midland, Bay City, and Saginaw that experienced the impact of the Edenville dam collapse last year.
The Commission is looking for input from residents of communities of interest in order to determine where district lines should fall with the intention of grouping communities bonded together around certain values, issues, or characteristics.
If you live in an area where this is the case, your input is extremely important and valuable for the Commission as they determine Michigan’s districts and try to make it so the districts are as representative of the populations within them as possible.
With public hearings being held in cities across Michigan, there are numerous opportunities to show up and make your voice heard. . Alternatively, if you cannot make it to a hearing in person, the MICRC has an online tool that you can use to submit a comment, redistricting plan, or a community of interest map. You can find the Redistricting Tool here, and a short video tutorial on how to use the tool here.
You can watch a livestream of every public hearing by visiting the Michigan Secretary of State’s YouTube page.
Upcoming Public Hearings
The MICRC is holding a total of 16 public hearings in various cities and communities across Michigan. The meetings, which started in early May, will run through July 1, 2021 and are being held on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6 PM to 9 PM each week. Here’s a list of the remaining hearing schedule:
- Novi – Tuesday, June 8, Suburban Collection Showplace 46100 Grand River Ave. Novi
- Pontiac – Thursday, June 10, Centerpoint Marriott 3555 Centerpoint Pkwy Pontiac
- Detroit – Tuesday, June 15, The Village Dome at Fellowship Chapel 7707 W. Outer Dr. Detroit
- Detroit – Thursday, June 17, TCF Center 1 Washington Blvd Detroit, MI 48226
- Port Huron – Tuesday, June 22, Blue Water Convention Center 800 Harker St. Port Huron
- Warren – Thursday, June 24, MRCC Banquet Center 23401 Mound Rd Warren
- Muskegon – Tuesday, June 29, VanDyke Mortgage Convention Center 939 Third Street Muskegon
- Grand Rapids – Thursday, July 1, DeVos Place 303 Monroe Ave NW Grand Rapids
For the first time ever, Michiganders have a chance to dictate how they will be represented in Lansing and in Washington, D.C. for the next ten years. At a time when fair and equal representation for all people is of utmost importance, your input and your voice are more important than ever.
Questions? Contact Michigan LCV Ed Fund Democracy For All Coordinator Mark Payne at [email protected].