The Ohio Farm Bureau state board of trustees voted at its April meeting to support the passage of Issue 1 on the state’s primary ballot. The primary is May 8.
Passage of Issue 1 would amend Ohio’s Constitution to reform the process for drawing Ohio’s congressional districts. A “yes” vote on this ballot initiative aligns with Ohio Farm Bureau policy, which supports “a comprehensive review and reform of Ohio’s current congressional redistricting and apportionment process.”
There are several areas where Farm Bureau policy and Issue 1 agree.
Issue 1 creates a process that is open and transparent:
– The General Assembly is first responsible for a redistricting bill that is required to be passed with a 3/5 vote and be bipartisan.
– It uses the Ohio Redistricting Commission, which was established in the Constitution by the voters.
– Issue 1 requires the General Assembly and the Ohio Redistricting Commission to take public input.
Issue 1 attempts to draw districts along county lines:
– The ballot measure sets forth provisions for not unduly splitting governmental units, giving preference to counties, followed by townships and then municipal corporations.
Issue 1 uses population without reference to major metropolitan areas used as a center or hub:
– If a county has a population larger than the district ratio, then the city or township will attempt to be put in a single district.
Issue 1 attempts to connect all communities:
– Congressional districts are to be composed of contiguous territory.
– When counties exceed district population, consideration will be given of other cities or townships in the county whose residents share common interests.
See the official ballot language.