New Jersey Redistricting Commission


Welcome to the Redistricting Commission’s website, and thank you for your interest in the congressional redistricting process in New Jersey.

As required by the New Jersey Constitution, the Redistricting Commission is charged with redrawing the lines of the State’s congressional districts, from which candidates for office are elected to serve in the United States House of Representatives.

The congressional redistricting process in New Jersey unfolds following congressional apportionment. Under congressional apportionment, Congress allocates the 435 seats in the United States House of Representatives to each state as required by the United States Constitution and in proportion to each state’s population. The Clerk of the House of Representatives transmits to the Governor of each state a certificate specifying the number of Representatives to which the state is entitled.

Congressional redistricting must then be undertaken in each state to create the congressional districts from which are elected the number of Representatives apportioned to the state by Congress. The purpose of redrawing the congressional districts is to ensure equal democratic representation in Congress among the members of the state’s population.

Both congressional apportionment and redistricting must be undertaken at the beginning of each decade to account for population changes that occurred during the previous decade in the United States, and within the geographic boundaries of each state. The United States Constitution establishes the federal decennial census as the basis for both apportionment and redistricting. The census provides the raw demographic and geographic data from which congressional districts are created.

In New Jersey, the congressional districts map is created by the 13-member Redistricting Commission. The following members have been appointed in accordance with the New Jersey Constitution to serve as commissioners for the current redistricting round.

MEMBERS

New Jersey Redistricting Commission Members
John J. Farmer, Jr. (Chairman)
Democratic Members Republican Members
  Joseph Roberts, Jr.
  (Delegation Chairman)
  Michael DuHaime
  (Delegation Chairman)
  Michael Baker
  (Delegation Vice-chair)
  Caroline Casagrande
  Nilsa Cruz-Perez   Sherine El-Abd
  Edward Farmer   Aubrey Fenton
  Jeannine Frisby LaRue   Eric Jaso
  Philip Thigpen   M. Susan Sheppard

Under the New Jersey Constitution, the commission must adopt the new congressional districts map by majority vote of its members, and certify such map to the New Jersey Secretary of State, on or before Tuesday, January 17, 2012. However, if the commission is not able to certify a congressional districts plan by that date, the New Jersey Supreme Court is required to certify one of the two district plans receiving the greatest number of votes (but not fewer than five votes), based on which of the two plans conforms most closely to federal legal and constitutional requirements.

As required by the State Constitution, the Redistricting Commission will be holding at least three public hearings in different parts of the State. As the congressional redistricting process unfolds, the commission is eager to engage the residents of the State of New Jersey. This website is designed to provide information to the general public about the purpose and process of congressional redistricting in New Jersey, and to facilitate the public’s input in this important process.