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Amendment Constitution

Sign the Petition

SEPA-Districts

The above map shows southeast gerrymandered Pennsylvania.

SB361 has been reintroduced in the Pennsylvania Senate.  This is an amendment to the state Constitution and it changes the rules for redistricting.  It takes politics out of the process and defines the shape of districts.  You can read the amendment here.

(b) (1) The bureau shall acquire appropriate information,
review and evaluate available facilities and develop programs and procedures, which may include the use of mapping software, in preparation for drawing congressional and legislative redistricting plans on the basis of each Federal census.

And then there is this which clearly defines how a district is to drawn and what tool is to be used for redistricting.  It also indicates which tools cannot be used for redistricting.

(2)To the extent consistent with paragraph (1), district boundaries shall coincide with the boundaries of political subdivisions of this Commonwealth. The number of counties and cities divided among more than one district shall be as small as possible. When there is a choice between dividing local political subdivisions, the more populous subdivisions shall be divided before the less populous, but this statement does not apply to a legislative district boundary drawn along a county line which passes through a city that lies in more than one county.

(3) Districts shall be composed of convenient contiguous territory. Areas which meet only at the points of adjoining corners are not contiguous.

(4) It is preferable that districts be compact in form, but the standards established by paragraphs (1), (2) and (3) take precedence over compactness where a conflict arises between compactness and these standards. In general, compact districts are those which are square, rectangular or hexagonal in shape to the extent permitted by natural or political boundaries.

(5) Districts should represent communities of interest as reflected by common economic patterns of production and

consumption, school district boundaries, cultural activities, self-identification, media coverage and other relevant demographic information.

(6) However, no district shall be drawn for the purpose of favoring a political party, incumbent legislator or member of Congress or other person or group. In establishing districts, no use shall be made of any of the following data:

(i) Addresses of incumbent legislators or members of Congress.

(ii) Political affiliations of registered voters.

(iii) Previous election results.

You can sign the petition here.

May the citizens of Pennsylvania be heard!  Speak Up!  Contact your state Senator and let them know that you support this amendment.

Categories
Amendment Constitution

Congressional Reform Act of 2011

Congressional Reform Act of 2011

The 26th amendment (granting the right to vote for 18 year-olds) took only 3 months & 8 days to be ratified! Why? Simple! The people demanded it. That was in 1971…before computers, before e-mail, before cell phones, etc. Of the 27 amendments to the Constitution, seven (7) took 1 year or less to become the law of the land…all because of public pressure.

1. No Tenure / No Pension. A Congressman collects a salary while in office and receives no pay when they are out of office.

2. Congress (past, present & future) participates in Social Security. All funds in the Congressional retirement fund move to the Social Security system immediately. All future funds flow into the Social Security system, and Congress participates with the American people. It may not be used for any other purpose.

3. Congress can purchase their own retirement plan, just as all Americans do.

4. Congress will no longer vote themselves a pay raise. Congressional pay will rise by the lower of CPI or 3%.

5. Congress loses their current health care system and participates in the same health care system as the American people.

6. Congress must equally abide by all laws they impose on the American people.

7. All contracts with past and present Congressmen are void effective 1/1/12. The American people did not make this contract with Congressmen. Congressmen made all these contracts for themselves.

Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, so ours should serve their term(s), then go home and back to work.