Porter Co. remap challenge rescheduled for Thursday

2014-01-09T05:59:00Z 2014-01-09T19:35:10Z Porter Co. remap challenge rescheduled for ThursdayBob Kasarda bob.kasarda@nwi.com, (219) 548-4345 nwitimes.com
January 09, 2014 5:59 am  • 

A court hearing has been rescheduled for Thursday on the legality of the Porter County Board of Commissioners last-minute redrawing of the County Council districts.

The hearing, which was derailed Tuesday as a result of weather closing the LaPorte County courthouse, is scheduled for 11 a.m. before LaPorte County Circuit Court Judge Thomas Alevizos.

The lawsuit focuses on the bipartisan decision by the commissioners to move Westchester Township Precinct 17 from District 1 to 2, yet leave it unattached from the 2nd District — and at odds with state law requiring that all four districts be contiguous.

The move, which has been criticized for taking place just weeks before candidate filing begins, resulted in Democrat County Councilman Jeremy Rivas losing his eligibility to continue representing the 2nd District. He was moved to District 4, which is represented by his political ally Republican James Polarek.

The three Porter County commissioners suspended the rules Dec. 17 to rush through two rounds of bipartisan approval of the plan, which they said narrows the population gap among the four districts from 10.4 to 3.19 percent. Indiana law requires that districts have as equal populations as possible.

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