(Part 1 is here.)

This is the exact wording of a ballot proposal necessary to implement my districting system through an amendment to the Colorado state constitution. The essence is under section 47. To be used in any other state, it might have to be modified, and any coastal states would need to add a provision for determining whether a waterway makes two counties non-adjacent. This can be used for Congressional districts and state legislative districts. The text here is written as it would appear in the blue book that Colorado residents receive in advance of an election. Capitalized text is what would be added by the amendment, all else is already present. Strikethrough doesn't work on this website, so text that would be removed by the amendment is bracketed.

Shall sections 3, 5 and 47 of article V of the constitution of the state of Colorado be amended to acheive a more objective system of districting?

Be it enacted by the People of the State of Colorado:

SECTION 1. At the next election at which such question may be submitted, there shall be submitted to the registered electors of the state of Colorado, for their approval or rejection, the following amendment to the constitution of the state of Colorado, to wit:

Section 3 of article V of the constitution of the state of Colorado is amended to read:

Section 3. Terms of senators and representatives, AND CLASSIFICATION OF SENATORS.

(1) [Senators shall be elected for the term of four years and] THE SENATE DISTRICTS SHALL BE NUMBERED CONSECUTIVELY, AND EVEN-NUMBERED DISTRICTS SHALL ELECT SENATORS FOR THE TERM OF FOUR YEARS IN EVERY YEAR THAT IS A MULTIPLE OF FOUR, AND ODD-NUMBERED DISTRICTS SHALL ELECT SENATORS FOR THE TERM OF FOUR YEARS IN EVERY YEAR THAT IS TWO MORE THAN A MULTIPLE OF FOUR. BUT SENATE TERMS SHALL BE DIVIDED INTO TWO TERMS OF TWO YEARS WHEN NECESSARY TO ENSURE THAT ALL SENATORS ARE ELECTED IN THE GENERAL ELECTION FOLLOWING THE FEDERAL CENSUS. R[r]epresentatives SHALL BE ELECTED for the term of two years.

(2) In order to broaden the opportunities for public service and to assure that the general assembly is representative of Colorado citizens, no senator shall serve more than two consecutive terms in the senate OR THREE WHEN EITHER OF THE FIRST TWO IS A TERM OF TWO YEARS, and no representative shall serve more than four consecutive terms in the house of representatives. This limitation on the number of terms shall apply to terms of office beginning on or after January 1, [1991] 2013. Any person appointed or elected to fill a vacancy in the general assembly and who serves at least [one-half] ONE HALF of a term of office shall be considered to have served a term in that office for purposes of this subsection (2). Terms are considered consecutive unless they are at least four years apart.

Section 5 of article V of the constitution of the state of Colorado is amended to read:

[Section 5. Classification of senators.]

[The senate shall be divided so that one-half of the senators, as nearly as practicable, may be chosen biennially.]

Section 47 of article V of the constitution of the state of Colorado is amended to read:

Section 47. Composition of districts.

(1) [Each district shall be as compact in area as possible and the aggregate linear distance of all district boundaries shall be as short as possible.] Each district shall consist of contiguous whole general election precincts. Districts of the same house shall not overlap.

EACH DISTRICT SHALL BE COMPOSED OF SELECTED COUNTIES OR PARTS OF COUNTIES. DISTRICTS SHALL BE FORMED ONE AT A TIME ACCORDING TO THE FOLLOWING PROCESS. THE SELECTION SHALL BEGIN WITH THE COUNTY WITH THE HIGHEST POPULATION DENSITY (DEFINED AS THE NUMBER OF RESIDENTS IN THE COUNTY DIVIDED BY THE TOTAL AREA OF THE COUNTY, INCLUDING LAND AND WATER) THAT IS NOT CONTAINED IN ANY OTHER DISTRICT OF THE SAME HOUSE. IF DURING THIS PROCESS THE SELECTED COUNTIES HAVE FEWER RESIDENTS THAN REQUIRED FOR A DISTRICT, ANOTHER COUNTY NOT ALREADY CONTAINED IN ANOTHER DISTRICT SHALL BE SELECTED WHICH MUST HAVE THE HIGHEST POPULATION DENSITY OF ALL UNSELECTED COUNTIES ADJACENT TO AT LEAST ONE OTHER SELECTED COUNTY. IF DURING THIS PROCESS THE SELECTED COUNTIES HAVE MORE RESIDENTS THAN REQUIRED FOR A DISTRICT, A COUNTY SHALL BE REMOVED FROM SELECTION WHICH MUST HAVE THE LOWEST POPULATION DENSITY OF ALL COUNTIES ADJACENT TO AT LEAST ONE OTHER NON-SELECTED COUNTY THAT IS NOT ALREADY PART OF ANOTHER DISTRICT, AND WHICH, BY ITS REMOVAL, SHALL NOT DIVIDE THE DISTRICT BEING FORMED INTO TWO OR MORE NON-CONTIGUOUS PARTS, UNLESS IT IS THE ONLY COUNTY THAT IS ADJACENT TO ANY NON-SELECTED COUNTY, IN WHICH CASE THE CONTIGUOUS GROUPS OF COUNTIES WITH THE FEWEST RESIDENTS SHALL ALSO BE REMOVED FROM SELECTION SO AS TO LEAVE ONE CONTIGUOUS SELECTION OF COUNTIES. IF SELECTION OF A COUNTY DIVIDES THE NON-SELECTED COUNTIES NOT ALREADY CONTAINED IN OTHER DISTRICTS INTO TWO OR MORE CONTIGUOUS PARTS, THE COUNTIES OF ALL SUCH PARTS SHALL BE SELECTED TO BE IN THE DISTRICT BEING FORMED, EXCEPT THOSE OF THE PART WITH THE MOST RESIDENTS, AND THE PROCESS SHALL THEN CONTINUE. WHEN REMOVAL OF A COUNTY OR COUNTIES CAUSES THE SET OF SELECTED COUNTIES TO BE THE SAME AS EARLIER IN THE PROCESS AND THE DISTRICT TO HAVE FEWER THAN THE REQUIRED NUMBER OF RESIDENTS, NO MORE COUNTIES SHALL BE SELECTED OR REMOVED FROM SELECTION, BUT THE COUNTY THAT WAS LAST REMOVED BY REASON OF POPULATION SHALL BE DIVIDED, WITH ONE PART BEING SELECTED SO THAT THE DISTRICT SHALL HAVE THE CORRECT NUMBER OF RESIDENTS AND THE OTHER PART OF THE COUNTY SHALL BE REMOVED FROM SELECTION AND CONSIDERED A COUNTY ITSELF, WITH THE SAME POPULATION DENSITY AS THE WHOLE COUNTY TO WHICH IT BELONGS, FOR THE PURPOSE OF FORMING OTHER DISTRICTS. THE EXACT DIVISION OF SAID COUNTY SHALL BE DETERMINED BY THE REAPPORTIONMENT COMMISSION AFTER ALL OF THE DISTRICTS ARE FORMED. THIS PROCESS SHALL THEN BE USED TO FORM THE NEXT DISTRICT UNTIL EVERY PART OF EVERY COUNTY OF THE STATE IS INCLUDED IN A DISTRICT. THE DISTRICTS OF EACH HOUSE SHALL BE NUMBERED CONSECUTIVELY IN THE ORDER OF THEIR FORMATION BY THIS PROCESS.

IF THESE RULES MAKE IT IMPOSSIBLE TO CONTINUE THE PROCESS OF FORMING DISTRICTS, THE REDISTRICTING COMMISSION SHALL HAVE DISCRETION TO SPLIT ONE COUNTY TO MAKE IT POSSIBLE TO CONTINUE.

(2) [Except when necessary to meet the equal population requirements of section 46, no part of one county shall be added to all or part of another county in forming districts.] Within counties whose territory is contained in more than one district of the same house, the number of cities and towns whose territory is contained in more than one district of the same house shall be as small as possible. When county, city, or town boundaries are changed, adjustments, if any, in legislative districts shall be as prescribed by law.

(3) Consistent with the provisions of this section and section 46 of this article, communities of interest, including ethnic, cultural, economic, trade area, geographic, and demographic factors, shall be preserved within a single district wherever possible.

SECTION 2. Each elector voting at said election and desirous of voting for or against said amendment shall cast a vote as provided by law either “Yes” or “No” on the proposition: “Shall section 47 of article V of the constitution of the state of Colorado be amended to acheive a more objective system of districting?

SECTION 3. The votes cast for the adoption or rejection of said amendment shall be canvased and the result determined in the manner provided by law for the canvasing of votes for representatives in Congress, and if a majority of the electors voting on the question shall have voted “Yes”, the said amendment shall become a part of the state constitution.

Catablog

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