Failure at the state level
In 2011 the Indiana Elections Division offered guidance to counties that chose to redistrict, but steadfastly refrained from advising them that they had to do so. Indeed, several county and election clerks who understood that redistricting was mandatory reported to us that they felt undermined by the Elections Division, which informed them that neither the Elections Division nor county clerks were supposed to be “redistricting police.”
The situation with school boards was complicated by the fact that no one—not the Elections Division, not the Department of Education and not the Indiana School Board Association—knows which school boards in the state have single-member electoral districts (in which case redistricting is mandatory) and which have residential districts (in which case it isn’t). In any case, neither the Elections Division nor the Department of Education deemed it their responsibility in 2011 to alert school corporations of the necessity to redistrict if they had single-member districts. The School Board Association did send an email to school boards on the matter in late in 2011, but only after a legislator had sent all school corporations an email alerting them to the necessity to redistrict after we had testified about the problem before an interim legislative committee in October 2011. In any case, the email from the School Board Association came too late for school boards to complete the redistricting process by the statutory deadline of Dec. 31.