By Kaylee Lindenmuth
A Jan. 22 ruling by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court has thrown out the current congressional district map for the state, ordering it redrawn by Feb. 15.
The ruling states that the map “clearly, plainly and palpably violates the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania” and therefore is unconstitutional, and cannot be used for the upcoming primary elections in May.
Kutztown lies within District 15, one of four districts with area in Berks County. It runs from Bethlehem, Northampton County to Middletown, Dauphin County, while Maxatawny Township serves as part of its southern border.
According to the courts ruling, a new map must be submitted to the Supreme Court by Feb. 15, and if the deadline is not met, the court will then redraw the map themselves.
The court also notes that the redistricting plan should be available to legislators by Feb. 19, and they should “take all measures, including adjusting the election calendar if necessary, to ensure that the May 15, 2018 primary election takes place as scheduled under that remedial districting plan.”
The current map took effect in 2011.