Returning from their break, redistricting commissioners actually got locked in a 3-3 partisan split over which rules manual they should be following, Mason's Manual or Robert's Rules of Order. GOP Co-Chairman Evan Frasure ruled it should be Mason's; the Democrats objected, but their objection failed on a 3-3 vote. This after an extended debate over GOP Commissioner Lou Esposito's proposal to let Power County commissioners come back and testify about why they've changed their minds about whether their county should be joined with Cassia County in a legislative district; Frasure ruled that commissioners should be able to ask anyone who's submitted written testimony to address the commission in person, and though Democrats grumbled that he was opening the possibility of dragging the redistricting process out through continued public testimony after extensive hearings around the state, they didn't object to his ruling.
Then, Frasure proposed that the gavel continue to be handed from one side to the other at adjournment at the end of each day of meetings, and no one objected. Frasure said it makes sense, “so that each side is treated equally, so that they will have equal opportunity to handle the chair.”
Now the commission is moving on to discussion of L-28, the Democratic legislative plan proposed last week.
Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.
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