The House and Senate are again poised to clash over redrawing political boundaries after a House redistricting committee Monday changed a plan passed by the Senate last week to redraw 40 Senate districts. The most significant changes shift district lines in Miami-Dade County. Sen. Diaz de la Portilla, R-Miami, amended a “base map” drawn by legislative staffers that drew more compact districts there but that also kept him out of a district that included fellow incumbent Sen. Anitere Flores, R-Miami. House redistricting chairman, Rep. Jose Oliva, R-Miami, said he redrew the Senate map to include some changes sought by the League of Women Voters and Common Cause, the voters rights groups who brought the redistricting lawsuit. Because his map includes much of the Senate version and parts of the voters groups’ preferred map, he doesn’t see another “collision course” with the Senate.
“We feel what we have done is that we have taken everyone’s concerns, put them together in a more numerically superior map in the hopes of being able to pass it,” Oliva said.
The House is scheduled to vote on the map Tuesday, sending it back to the Senate. If the Senate doesn’t pass the House version, the chambers will enter into formal talks to resolve their differences. The special session to redraw the Senate districts is set to end Friday.
Lawmakers are in a special session after Senate leaders admitted the maps drawn in 2012 violated a constitutional prohibition against gerrymandering. Rep. Jared Moskowitz, D-Coral Springs, slammed the Senate for dragging the House along and wasting taxpayer money in the process.