[Dome] Temporary Redistricting Advisory Commission
February 19, 2001Minutes provided by the Legislative Service Bureau


Lance Ehmcke
Joe McCarty
Joseph O'Hern
Linda Primmer
Others in attendance: Diane Bolender, Ed Cook, Gary Rudicil, and Jodi Steenhoek, Legislative Service Bureau; Andy Warren, Senate Republican Caucus Staff; Jason White, House Republican Caucus Staff.


Minutes prepared by Gary Rudicil, Senior Systems Analyst, LSB
Organizational staffing by Diane Bolender, Director, Ed Cook, Legal Counsel, and Gary Rudicil, Senior Computer Systems Analyst

  1. Procedural Business.
  2. Introductions and Election of Temporary Chairperson.
  3. Adoption of Rules of Procedure.
  4. Election of Fifth Member of Commission.
  5. Additional Business.
  6. Attachment.
  7. Materials Distributed to the Commission.

I. Procedural Business.

Call to Order. The first meeting of the Temporary Redistricting Advisory Commission was called to order by Ms. Diane Bolender, Director, Legislative Service Bureau, at 1:10 p.m., Monday, February 19, 2001, in Committee Room 116 of the State Capitol, Des Moines, Iowa.

Next Meeting Date. The Commission agreed to meet at 10:00 a.m., Tuesday, February 27, 2001, via telephone conference call to be initiated by the Legislative Service Bureau. The purpose of the meeting is to elect the fifth member of the Commission.

Adjournment. The meeting was adjourned at approximately 2:42 p.m.

II. Introductions and Election of Temporary Chairperson.

Mr. Ed Cook, Legal Counsel, Legislative Service Bureau, explained that the members of the Temporary Redistricting Advisory Commission present at the meeting had been selected to serve by legislative leaders in each of the four legislative caucuses. In accordance with Chapter 42 of the Iowa Code, the four members must select a fifth member who shall serve as chairperson. Mr. Cook briefly discussed the meeting agenda, the need to adopt rules of procedure, and selection of the fifth member. After introductions by the Commission and staff members, nominations were accepted for a temporary chairperson. Ms. Primmer moved to nominate Mr. Ehmcke, and the motion was seconded by Mr. O'Hern. Ms. McCarty moved that the nominations cease. The motion to nominate Mr. Ehmcke as temporary chairperson was approved by voice vote.

III. Adoption of Rules of Procedure.

The Legislative Service Bureau distributed copies of proposed rules for the Commission. The rules are the same as those adopted in 1991.

Ms. Bolender informed the Commission that members will be considered present if they participate via a speaker telephone during meetings.

Mr. O'Hern moved that the proposed rules of procedure presented to the Commission by the Legislative Service Bureau be adopted, and Ms. McCarty seconded the motion. The motion was approved by voice vote.

IV. Election of Fifth Member of Commission.

The Commission discussed possible nominees for the fifth member of the Commission, who will also become the chairperson. Ms. Primmer distributed a list of nominees, and several potential nominees by Temporary Chairperson Ehmcke and Mr. O'Hern were also distributed. Ms. McCarty indicated that she has two potential nominees, but she must first communicate with them further before nominating either of them. The lists of nominees are on file in the Legislative Service Bureau. Temporary Chairperson Ehmcke suggested that each Commission member discuss the criteria they think the Commission should use in the selection of the fifth Commission member.

Mr. O'Hern said that a nominee should provide geographical diversity to the Commission, understand how redistricting impacts Iowa, understand the urban-rural interaction in Iowa, and understand that the main purpose of the Commission is to hold public hearings on the first proposed redistricting plan and that the Commission does not create or vote on proposed redistricting plans.

Ms. McCarty said that a nominee should not be known for partisan activities and should understand that the Commission serves a public relations role. She believes that the perception that the Commission is fair and balanced is important.

Ms. Primmer said that a nominee should understand the geographical diversity of Iowa and ideally have a knowledge of how the Legislature works. She believes that since the individual will serve as the chair, the nominee should be able to lead a meeting.

Temporary Chairperson Ehmcke commented that he believes the members agree on many of the criteria for selection. He said that a nominee should provide a geographical balance to the Commission, so that it has members from across Iowa and from both urban and rural areas. He also said that being a previously elected official can be beneficial in that it can provide skills necessary to chair a commission. He concluded by saying that selecting a chairperson who is currently associated with a certain organization may lead to the impression by the public that preference was given to that organization when choosing the chairperson.

Mr. Ehmke briefly described each of his nominees.

Ms. McCarty moved, and Ms. Primmer seconded, that the Commission members each provide to the Legislative Service Bureau a final list of nominees for the fifth member of the Commission by Thursday, February 22, 2001, that the Legislative Service Bureau shall distribute the names of all nominees to all members prior to the next meeting, and that the selection of the fifth member be made at the next meeting by telephone conference call at 10:00 a.m., February 27, 2001. The motion was approved by voice vote.

V. Additional Business.

Mr. O'Hern suggested that the Legislative Service Bureau provide the Commission with historical information regarding the adoption of redistricting plans in 1981 and 1991, and also provide information regarding the disposition of redistricting plans in other states. He is interested in court challenges to redistricting plans and in knowing whether the courts drew districts for the states after state-drawn plans were deemed unconstitutional.

VI. Attachment.

The following attachment is included with these minutes:

VII. Materials Distributed to the Commission.
   a) Report of the Temporary Redistricting Advisory Commission to the General Assembly, April 30, 1991.
   b) Proposed Rules of Procedure, submitted February 19, 2001.
   c) Suggested nominees for Commission chairperson from Mr. Ehmcke, Mr. O'Hern, and Ms. Primmer.

Rules of Procedure
Temporary Redistricting Advisory Commission

  1. Three members shall constitute a quorum, but a lesser number may recess or adjourn a meeting of the commission.
  2. The affirmative vote of at least a majority of those preesnt is required to adopt any motion, except as provided in Rule 3.
  3. The affirmative vote of at least three members is required to adopt a final recommendation of the commission.
  4. Mason's Manual of Legislative Procedures shall govern the deliberations of the commission, except that in the event a Rule adopted by the commission is in conflict with Mason's Manual then the commission Rule shall govern.
  5. Meetings of the commission shall be set by motion before adjournment, or by call of the chairperson if meetings are necessary before the date set in the motion.
  6. Rules of the commission may be changed or suspended by the affirmative vote of three members.

February 19,2001

Return To Home Site index

Comments about this site or page? webmaster@legis.iowa.gov

Please remember that the person listed above does not vote on bills. Direct all comments concerning legislation to State Legislators.

© 1995 Cornell College and League of Women Voters of Iowa

Last update: 01-Mar-2001 11:09 AM