Appalled by , Senator Velmanette Montgomery and other Democratic lawmakers will hold two public hearings this week -- on Wednesday and Thursday -- to protest what they say is a blatant and desperate attempt by Republicans to establish a political advantage.
The proposed redistricting lines were drawn up by the New York State Legislative Task Force on Demographic Research and Reapportionment (LATFOR) Commission, a Republican-led committee.
At a time when New York State is losing Federal representation because of a reduction in State population, the LATFOR commission has created a new senate district for Upstate New York, and several downstate distrcits, including State Senator Eric Adams' 20th District of Central Brooklyn.
"The Republican commission members are attempting to sow trouble among downstate Senators by drawing lines that pit sitting members against each other," said Montgomery.
Governor Cuomo and other Albany legislators, including Assemblyman Hakeem Jeffries of the 57th A.D. in Brooklyn, are calling the proposed LATFOR maps "unacceptable," and an abusive attempt to protect incumbents, punish the opposition and artificially maintain power.
NYS Senator Martin Dilan, the lone Democratic Senator on the commission, denounced the series of hearings that led up to the drawing of the lines as “fraudulent” and the end product as “narrow” and “politically motivated.”
The public is invited to testify at the newest round of LATFOR public hearings taking place:
Wednesday, February 1, 2012
St. Francis College
Founders Hall Auditorium
180 Remsen Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201
Thursday, February 2, 2012
Assembly Hearing Room, 19th
New York, NY 10007
(Complete list attached)
Those interested in presenting testimony must fill out and send in this form by fax or mail, or contact Dina Weissman of the Legislative Task Force on Demographic Research & Reapportionment at (212) 618-1101.
"It is very important that we have as many people as possible show up to speak in opposition to these blatantly political maps which diminish the value of our downstate votes," said Montgomery.