Hawaii
Congressional BoundariesDrawn by politician commission
State BoundariesDrawn by politician commission
Governor's PartyDemocratic
Legislative PartyDemocratic

Scored Maps from the Redistricting Report Card

Hawaii 2021 Commission State Senate Map

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Fri Nov 05 2021
Hawaii 2021 Commission State House Map

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Fri Nov 05 2021
Hawaii 2021 Commission Congressional Map

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Fri Oct 15 2021

Communities of Interest

Check out Communities of Interest collected in this state on Representable

Learn about Communities of Interest in this state

Census-related Redistricting Timeline Delays

State Legislative

Alert:
Low

Congressional

Alert:
Low

Process

Politician Commission

Hawaii’s state legislative and congressional districts are both drawn by a nine-member Reapportionment Commission. The majority and minority leaders of the state Senate and House each select two members. These eight members then appoint the ninth commissioner; if they fail to agree on one, the appointment falls to the Hawaii Supreme Court.

Criteria

In addition to the federal requirements of one person, one vote and the Voting Rights Act, Hawaii’s state constitution (Art. IV § 6) requires that state legislative and congressional districts be compact, contiguous, and preserve communities of interest (“submergence of an area in a larger district wherein substantially different socio-economic interests predominate shall be avoided”). Unduly favoring or disfavoring a person or party is prohibited.

Public Input

The Hawaii Office of Elections has released its 2020 redistricting website, where the public can find relevant information and contacts.

Hawaii’s state statutes (Haw. Rev. Stat. § 25-2) require that the Reapportionment Commission hold at least one public hearing in each of the state's basic island units after releasing draft plans.

In the last redistricting cycle, the Commission held hearings between August 30 and September 16, 2011. The Commission also accepted public submission of maps on their website, providing online GIS software as a resource.

2011 Cycle

The most contentious issue in the 2011 redistricting cycle was the inclusion of non-residents. For the first time, the Reapportionment Commission voted to count non-resident students and military personnel in redistricting calculations. This decision led to a series of legal challenges:

  • In Matsukawa v. State of Hawaii 2011 Reapportionment Commission and Solomon v. Abercrombie, the Hawaii Supreme Court ruled that non-residents could not be considered in reapportionment. The Court struck down the legislative maps and ordered the commission to draft new plans.
  • In Kostick v. Nago, plaintiffs brought a federal challenge to the revised redistricting map, arguing that the removal of non-resident students and military personnel was improper. In May 2012, a federal panel refused to overturn Hawaii’s maps.

Issues

Pitfalls

The success of this Commission will depend on public input. In the 2011 cycle, there was some controversy over the notice requirement to testify at public hearings, as the commission only gave three days’ notice for meetings and required residents to request to testify at least 48 hours before. This time around, it is important to ensure that the public input process is robust and readily accessible for all.

Actions

In 2021, participate in the Commission’s public input process.

  • Obtain Hawaii redistricting data from OpenPrecincts.
  • Start to plan out what defines your community – whether it’s a shared economic interest, school districts, or other social or other cultural, historical, or economic interests – and how that can be represented on a map. This will come in handy once the commission starts collecting feedback.
  • Use software tools such as Dave's Redistricting App and Districtr to draw district maps showing either (a) what a fair map would look like, or (b) where the community you believe should be better represented is located.

Read the Common Cause Activist Handbook on Redistricting Reform to learn about what reforms have been successful in the past, and what steps to take to enact reform in the future. While the deadline to change the constitutional process for this redistricting cycle has passed, it is never too early to plan and organize for reforms.

Contacts

Common Cause Hawaii

League of Women Voters of Hawaii

Sources

All About Redistricting

NCSL

Ballotpedia