ANCHORAGE, Alaska — A Fairbanks judge has rejected the Alaska Redistricting Board’s revised redistricting plan as insufficiently compliant with the Alaska Constitution, after the Alaska Supreme Court rejected the board's original plan in March.
The Friday ruling from Superior Court Judge Michael P. McConahy (PDF) says the board ignored the state supreme court’s order, based on previous redistricting case Hickel v. Southeast Conference, to draft a plan primarily compliant with the state constitution rather than the federal Voting Rights Act. It also claims that the revised plan reused many voting districts from the original plan, without individually revising them for compliance with the court order.
“The Board did not make specific findings, by district, that each of the unchanged Proclamation Plan districts satisfied the requirements of the Alaska Constitution,” McConahy wrote. “The court finds that the Board’s method did not comply with either the spirit or the letter of the Alaska Supreme Court’s order and the Hickel process.”