House Bill 413 — City council elections, districts

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Bill description: HB 413 requires cities with a population of 100,000 or more to elect their city councilors by district.

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Does it in any way restrict public access to information related to government activity or otherwise compromise government transparency or accountability? Conversely, does it increase public access to information related to government activity or increase government transparency or accountability?

HB 413 requires cities with a population of 100,000 or more (according to the federal census) to establish districts and elect city councilors by those districts. The districts are to be based on election precincts. Additionally, HB 413 requires that each candidate for city councilor reside within the district he or she is attempting to represent.

Under current law, cities with populations under 100,000 may establish districts and elect city councilors by those districts if they so choose. This legislation would not change anything for them.

The changes required by HB 413 serve to increase the transparency of the city election process and increase the quality of representation by requiring that city councilors in larger cities reside in and campaign in the portions of the city that they represent.

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