The Districting and Apportionment Commission has authority under the Montana
Constitution to draw the boundaries of congressional and legislative districts
every 10 years, using population data from the most recent U.S. Census. Montana
is one of only thirteen states that give the primary responsibility for drawing
legislative districts to a commission.
After results from the 2010 Census are available, the current Commission must
complete a Congresisonal redistricting plan within 90 days. The legislative redistricting plan will be presented to the 2013 Legislature for review
and recommendations. The Legislature has 30 days to make recommendations to the Commission. Within 30 days of receiving the Legislature's recommendations,
the Commission must file the redistricting plan with the Secretary of State
and it becomes law. Although the Commission may modify the plan to accommodate
the Legislature's recommendations, it is not required to do so. The legislative plan will
be in effect for the 2014 election cycle.
The Commission's work
plan outlines a tentative schedule to complete its constitutionally required
Article V, Section
14(2) of the Montana Constitution provides that the redistricting and reapportioning
of the state shall be carried out by a commission of five citizens and lists the
manner in which those commissioners are to be selected.
Commissioners are selected in the session immediately before a federal
Commissioners may not be public officials.
The majority and minority leaders of each house of the Legislature select
The first four commissioners have 20 days to select the fifth member, who
will also be the Commission's presiding officer.
The Supreme Court selects the fifth commissioner if the first four are unable
to select a commissioner within the 20 days.