Del. Special Sessions Planned To Deal With Redistricting

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The Delaware General Assembly will hold several special session days in the fall to deal with redistricting, which happens every ten years after the U.S. Census.

House Speaker Pete Schwartzkopf, D- Rehoboth Beach and Senate President Pro Tempore David Sokola, D- Newark said Thursday that reports indicate Delaware might not receive its 2020 census data until late summer, after the House and Senate recess. Early reports also indicate data may be incomplete when it does arrive.

The special session dates have yet to be announced, but are likely to take place in the fall over the course of a few weeks.

Ten years ago, and in past years, Census data has been available early in the year for lawmakers to go about drawing the boundary lines of Delaware’s 62 legislative districts.

“Redistricting is an extremely complex process, but we have always met our obligation,” Schwartzkopf said. “However, our redistricting schedule – which would have started this spring – has been thrown off because of problems due to the previous presidential administration and the ongoing pandemic. Rather than leave things in doubt, we feel it is best to be upfront and announce this fall session now so everyone can plan accordingly.”

“Just like every one of our constituents, we have had to make adjustments to account for the failed leadership of the previous administration and this is no different,” Sokola said. “On the bright side, however, Speaker Schwartzkopf and I hope these extra session days will allow our members to focus all of their attention on this important process and provide greater opportunity for public input than ever before.”

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