Redistricting hearings part of legislature's backup plan - | WBTV Charlotte

Redistricting hearings part of legislature's backup plan

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -

The General Assembly may have to approve a new map refitting North Carolina's congressional districts by the end of the week.

So lawmakers are taking public comments following a recent federal court ruling striking down some of the boundaries.

A redistricting committee planned six public hearings Monday from Asheville to Wilmington, one held Monday in Charlotte at Central Piedmont Community College. Bad weather forced the cancellation of a seventh hearing in Greensboro.

A three-judge panel called the 1st and 12th Districts illegal racial gerrymanders to favor minority candidates and demanded a conforming plan by Friday.

Republican lawmakers say those districts are legal and asked the U.S. Supreme Court to block that ruling and allow House primary elections March 15 under current boundaries.

The hearings are part of a backup plan should the Supreme Court refuse. That plan would reconvene the full legislature Thursday.

However, concerns do exist over timing because North Carolina has scheduled its primary for next month.

As of last week,700 absentee ballots have been sent out by the Mecklenburg County Board of Elections and more than 40 have been returned. Some have questioned what would happen to ballots that have already been cast.

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