HARRISBURG - At least two challenges of Pennsylvania's new legislative redistricting plan are in the works, people involved in the efforts said Thursday.
The state Senate Democrats and a Chester County coalition that includes the county Democratic Party said they plan to file petitions with the Pennsylvania Supreme Court by early next week. Wednesday is the deadline for filing appeals.
The state's high court, which has the final say on the new district maps for the 203-seat House of Representatives and the 50-seat Senate, has scheduled a Jan. 23 hearing in Harrisburg to consider arguments on appeals.
The appeals inevitably will prolong uncertainty over the 2012 legislative district maps - potentially bad news for legislators and candidates trying to plan for the election.
Both petitions are expected to contest the constitutionality of changes that a five-member commission made in carrying out the decennial task of redrawing the district boundaries to reflect population shifts over the past decade.
Backers say they plan to argue that communities were needlessly split into separate districts and that politics played too large a role in the process.
The Legislative Reapportionment Commission consists of the Republican and Democratic floor leaders from the House and Senate, with a senior judge appointed by the state Supreme Court serving as chairman.