New Hawaii Political Boundaries Released

Nanea Kalani/Civil Beat

The Hawaii Reapportionment Commission appears to have listened to public comment at recent community hearings and tweaked political boundaries — again.

New maps released Monday would reunite Newtown with Pearl City. And Makakilo would not be part of the North Shore, among other changes. Those were major issues at the public hearings last week.

If all goes as planned, legislative candidates could start to pull nomination papers as early as Friday, according to the state Office of Elections. The process has been on hold since the redistricting plans submitted in September were challenged in court and ultimately invalidated by the Hawaii Supreme Court in January for including too many non-permanent residents in the population base.

The commission had come up with new districts that do not include more than 100,000 military personnel, their dependents and out-of-state university students as part of political district populations. The change shifts a Senate seat from Oahu to the Big Island. Those maps went out for public comment last week on the Big Island and Oahu.

The latest plans reflect changes to four Oahu House districts based on feedback from residents who claimed the proposed boundaries would break up communities, including the North Shore. All other House and Senate seats are unchanged from the commission's Feb. 15 plans.

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