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San Juan County welcomes redrawing of election districts

San Juan County welcomes redrawing of election districts

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SALT LAKE CITY — San Juan County commissioners are welcoming a federal judge's order that an independent expert redraw the southeastern Utah county's commission and school board election districts because they're unconstitutional.

Commissioners said in a statement Friday that they asked for an independent expert to oversee the redrawing of the boundaries two years ago. They say it will allow all county residents to have an equal say.

U.S. District Judge Robert Shelby ordered San Juan County to redraw the election maps last year after finding they were unconstitutional. He ruled Thursday that the new maps are still unconstitutional and primarily drawn based on race, violating the rights of Native Americans who make up roughly half the county's population.

The Navajo Nation filed a lawsuit against the county five years ago challenging the districts.

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