Redistricting Controversy Nears Climax in Brooklyn

March 14, 2012 Updated: March 14, 2012

NEW YORK—On Monday night, federal Magistrate Judge Roanne Mann submitted her final plan for redistricting, with some minor changes from the plan she released last Tuesday. She took some public concerns in Brooklyn into account concerning dividing communities of interest in her revisions.

Mann’s plan eliminates Republican Congressman Bob Turner’s district in Queens/Brooklyn. He has now set his sights on Democratic Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand’s seat.

“I will travel to the Republican State Convention in Rochester later this week and humbly ask for the Republican nomination for the United States Senate,” announced Turner in a statement on Tuesday.

On Sunday night, the state Legislature released it’s final draft of a redistricting plan, also with only minor changes. The Legislature will likely vote on the plan Wednesday.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo may veto the Legislature’s plan if he feels its partisan nature has not changed.

By making few changes to the plan, the Legislature is essentially calling the governor on his bluff, said Doug Muzzio, professor at Baruch College/CUNY School of Public Affairs.

Mann’s proposed lines will be reviewed by a three-judge panel before they are finalized. The panel will hold a public hearing on the matter Thursday, by which time the court will also request an update from the Legislature on its redistricting plans.

Time is running out, as nomination petitions will begin circulating on March 20 and the lines should be determined by then.