The People’s Maps Commission will hold a virtual public hearing at 5:30p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 28, to seek public input on the upcoming redistricting of legislative maps from constituents of Wisconsin’s 7th Congressional District, which includes Douglas County.

Although the hearing will focus on the 7th Congressional District, all Wisconsin residents are encouraged to watch and participate. Anyone who wishes to testify at the hearing must register through the People’s Maps Commission website by 5 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 26.

Each speaker will have three minutes to speak. Registration is on a first come, first served basis, with priority given to residents of Wisconsin’s 7th Congressional District. Written comments can also be submitted at any time using the feedback form available on the website. Written comments will be reviewed by the commissioners and are public record.

Selected by a three judge panel, the nine-member nonpartisan redistricting commission is charged with drawing fair, impartial maps for the state of Wisconsin.

Every 10 years, each state redraws their legislative and congressional districts using data from the decennial census. In addition to the data from the 2020 U.S. Census, the commission will use information gathered during the public hearing process to prepare new maps. It will then be up to the Legislature to take up and approve the maps created by the commission.

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The Jan. 28 hearing is the commission’s fifth in a series of at least eight meetings, one for each one of Wisconsin’s eight congressional districts. It will include testimony from subject matter experts, give Wisconsin residents the opportunity to express how they have been affected by legislative redistricting and allow residents to share their ideas for how Wisconsin can work together to achieve fair maps.

Additional hearing dates will take place Feb. 11 for the 1st Congressional District, Feb. 25 for the 6th Congressional District and March 11 for the 2nd Congressional District. Recordings of previous public hearings are available online.