Bipartisan team seeks changes for Nebraska redistricting

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — A bipartisan team in the Legislature is trying to reform Nebraska’s politically charged process of approving new legislative and congressional districts.

Sens. John Murante of Gretna and Heath Mello of Omaha argued Friday that lawmakers should create an independent commission to propose new boundaries.

Murante, a Republican, told the Legislature’s Executive Board he’s still sorting out final details on his bill with Mello, a Democrat.

Nebraska’s current process requires a special legislative committee to propose new boundaries once every decade, after the census, for lawmakers and the governor to approve. The system came under fire during the last redistricting in 2011, with Democrats accusing the majority Republicans of gerrymandering.

The bill was backed by Common Cause Nebraska and the Nebraska Farmer’s Union.

Read more at the Grand Island Independent.