Burgum signs legislative redistricting bill passed this week
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — Gov. Doug Burgum has signed the legislative redistricting bill that was overwhelmingly approved by the state Legislature this week.
Redistricting was among the main issues before the Republican-controlled Legislature in its special session which convened on Monday.
The new map, which won final Senate approval Wednesday, reflects a continued loss of political clout in rural areas due to population shifts in the past decade.
Though the map maintains 47 legislative districts, it creates three new districts in the state’s fastest-growing areas but erases an equal amount in population-lean rural regions. The new map also separates House districts on two American Indian reservations in the state, a move tribal leaders believe will increase the odds for electing their own members to the Legislature.
The redistricting plan was drafted by a GOP-controlled committee of lawmakers over several weeks. It was required due to population shifts reflected in the 2020 federal census.
“This historic process marked the first time since 1910 that North Dakota had grown by more than 100,000 residents in a decade and the first time since 1930 that our state had a new record high population, having experienced the fourth-highest population growth rate in the nation this past decade,” the Republican governor said in signing the bill late Thursday.