ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — Gov. Larry Hogan is encouraging Marylanders to comment on the draft legislative and congressional maps, officials said Wednesday.

The maps are published by the Maryland Citizens Redistricting Commission. The independent commission is the first of its kind in state history. It is challenged with drawing fair legislative and congressional maps for the 2022 elections.

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Officials said members are divided equally between republicans, democrats and those unaffiliated. None of the members are elected officials or candidates for office. Gov. Hogan also has no involvement.

“As a mix of Democrats, Republicans, and Independents, our members have embraced our charge to create new district boundaries that are free from political influence and offer the opportunity for free and fair elections in Maryland,” the Commission stated in a recent update to the governor. “We are continuing to engage the community and urge their participation in this very open, public, and transparent process. We will finalize our commission’s map plans and present them to you for your consideration. You can expect these final map recommendations by early November.”

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The commission is in its third round of public meetings. To date, they have held 32 public meetings and have received more than 80 map submissions from the public.

“This is what real nonpartisan redistricting looks like, fairness, transparency, and accountability,” said Governor Hogan. “While the Citizens Commission has already published draft maps and held dozens of public meetings, the legislature’s backroom partisan process is run by career politicians, has released no draft maps, and has no map portal for citizen input. I encourage all Marylanders to take part in the process and comment on the independent Commission’s maps. We want to make sure that this time the people of Maryland are actually drawing these maps—not the politicians or the party bosses.”

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CBS Baltimore Staff