Today, state Senator Vernon Sykes (D-Akron) and Ohio House Speaker Bob Cupp (R-Lima), co-chairs of the Ohio Redistricting Commission ("Commission"), announced the schedule for upcoming regional public hearings. The hearings, which will take place throughout the state from Monday, August 23 through Friday, August 27, will provide Ohioans the opportunity to contribute their ideas on the future of Ohio's state legislative districts by offering public testimony and submitting map proposals.
"The makeup of our state legislative districts will have an impact on Ohio's state and local governments for the next ten years. This is why it's important for Ohioans to have a say in the redistricting process," Sykes said. "Ohioans played a crucial role in increasing transparency when they voted in 2015 and 2018 to reform the way we draw our statewide maps. I look forward to hearing what Ohioans have to say during our hearings and taking their input into consideration when creating maps that best represent voters' preferences."
The hearings will take place on the following days:
· Monday, August 23 from 9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.: Cleveland
· Monday, August 23 from 2:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.: Youngstown
· Tuesday, August 24 from 9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.: Dayton
· Tuesday, August 24 from 2:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.: Cincinnati
· Wednesday, August 25 from 9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.: Zanesville
· Wednesday, August 25 from 2:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.: Rio Grande
· Thursday, August 26 from 9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.: Lima
· Thursday, August 26 from 2:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.: Toledo
· Friday, August 27 from 9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.: Akron
· Friday, August 27 from 2:30 - 5:30 p.m.: Mansfield
The full list of dates, times and locations for the hearings can be found here
. Hearings will also be broadcast live, and more information will be made available about how the public can tune in closer to the hearing dates.
"Ohio’s process to create fair and reasonable state legislative and congressional districts includes the opportunity for the people of Ohio to be heard on the matter," Speaker Cupp said. "As a co-chair of the commission, I believe it's important to open the process for input from Ohio’s citizens. The information and ideas gathered will be helpful to our important constitutional task."
These public hearings are just the beginning of the redistricting process for state legislative districts. More hearings will be scheduled once a map has been proposed by the Commission. The Ohio Redistricting Commission is responsible for drawing legislative maps and may also have a role in the drawing of congressional maps. It is composed of Senator Sykes, Speaker Cupp, House Minority Leader Emilia Sykes (D-Akron), Senate President Matt Huffman (R-Lima), Governor Mike DeWine, Auditor Keith Faber and Secretary of State Frank LaRose.