Why do Legislative & Congressional Districts need to be redrawn?
Once every ten years, the U.S. Census Bureau publishes updated census information reflecting changes in the population since the previous census. This information is used by states to redraw local, legislative, and congressional districts so that each district has approximately the same number of people in it.
For more information on redistricting in general, please visit the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) redistricting overview.
What is the Process of Redistricting in Wisconsin?
The non-partisan Wisconsin Legislative Reference Bureau (LRB) published an in-depth guide explaining the law, principles, and process of redistricting in Wisconsin.
REDISTRICTING PLAN VALUES
The following criteria can be used to evaluate a redistricting plan:
- Population Deviation
One objective of redistricting is to create new districts where each district has approximately the same number of people in them. The ideal population for each district is calculated by dividing the total population by the number of districts. Population deviation is the measure of how much a plan’s districts vary from the ideal population.
- County and Municipal Splits
A county split occurs when a county is divided into more than one district. A municipal split occurs when a city, village, or town is split into more than one district.
- Core Constituency
Core Constituency is the measure of how many people will stay in the same district after the enactment of the new districts.
- Staggered-Term Disenfranchisement
Only half of Wisconsin State Senate Districts elect their Senator in any given fall election. Staggered-term disenfranchisement refers to people who did not vote for State Senator in 2020 and would not get to vote for State Senator in 2022. During this redistricting cycle, this occurs when a voter is “moved” from an odd-numbered district under the old plan to an even-numbered district under a new plan.
Districts must be in “as compact form as practicable.” While districts do not have to be perfect circle – the most compact shape – sprawling districts with unusual shapes and appendages should be avoided.
- Communities of Interest
Communities of Interest are areas where the residents have common interests and concerns special to that community that would be benefited by inclusion in a single district. For example, those interests might be economic, commercial, historic, environmental, or based on political units (such as school districts, municipal lines, or tribal boundaries). There is no exhaustive list of what commonalities create a community of interest or how large or small a community of interest is.
Free Web-Based Redistricting Applications
How Do I Submit Input?
Once you complete your plan, you will need to export the plan as a file to submit it to the Wisconsin Legislature. Accepted file type: CSV.
We recommend that you use plans created on or after September 1, 2021. This will ensure that the underlying dataset is compatible with the most recent U.S. Census Bureau data.
When you are ready to submit your plan, please go to the Submission Page.
- Valid Submissions may be:
- Full Statewide Legislative or Congressional plan
- Regional Assembly, Senate, or Congressional plan
- Communities of Interest
- Valid Upload Type:
- Ward or Block Assignment (.CSV) file
Submissions will be published here.
Who Are My Legislators?
Determine which Legislators represent your area and how to contact them:
Wisconsin's population based on the 2020 U.S. Census is 5,893,718 people. The following graphic breaks down the ideal district population for Assembly, Senate, and Congressional Districts.
Redistricting Data includes 2020 TIGER Blocks with PL 94-171 Summarized Demographics.