Iowa’s 2021 Redistricting Process

The Iowa Supreme Court issued an order September 14 announcing that the Court’s constitutional duty to “cause a map to be reappointed” will be met by following the redistricting process laid out in Chapter 42. This means redistricting is in the hands of the Legislature. The Court set a December 1 deadline for the Legislature to complete its work. Here’s a link to the order:

Governor Reynolds sent out a news release earlier yesterday announcing that she signed a proclamation convening a special legislative session on Tuesday, October 5, 2021, “to consider and enact a plan of legislative and congressional redistricting in accordance with the framework set forth in chapter 42 of the Iowa Code.”

Estimated Timeline and What to Expect:

9/16/21 — At 10 a.m., the nonpartisan Legislative Services Agency (LSA) will deliver packets to the House and Senate chamber that includes a map, a copy of the bill (which describes in detail the boundaries for each district), and a memo regarding data on standards, populations, and deviations for Plan 1.

9/16/21 — Shortly after it is released to legislators, Plan 1 and accompanying information will be available on the Legislature’s website:

Week of 9/20/21 — The Temporary Redistricting Advisory Commission is scheduled to  hold virtual public hearings to gather public input on Plan 1 on these dates:

  • Monday, September 20: 7:00 pm – 9:30 pm
  • Tuesday, September 21:  12:00 noon – 3:00 pm
  • Wednesday, September 22: 6:00 pm – 8:30 p.m.

Instructions for registration and submitting public comment are available at

14-day deadline to submit report — The Commission is required to submit its report from the public hearings to the Legislature no later than 14 days after the first plan is submitted to the Legislature.

October 5, 2021 – Special Session on Plan 1

December 1 – Redistricting process must be complete.

Here’s the statement that Senate Democratic Leader Zach Wahls released yesterday:

“We are currently reviewing the order from the Iowa Supreme Court regarding redistricting. As we have said since Day 1, Iowans deserve a fair redistricting process, without interference from politicians, and without partisan amendments. The Legislature should approve Plan 1 during the October 5 special session if it meets all the legal and constitutional requirements.”