Commissioner Jim Lucachick and 30 others file civil suit against Beltrami County

Commissioner Jim Lucachick and 30 others are suing Beltrami County over the redistricting results.

John Steffenhagen, who represented Bemidji Township over the annexation dispute with the City of Bemidji and the Greater Bemidji Joint Planning Board years ago, represents the plaintiffs.

The complaint filed Monday says the redistricting map the commissioners approved on a 3-2 vote did not follow guidelines established in state statute. The complaint also says the process did not allow for enough public comment.

The plaintiffs are demanding that the Beltrami County Board of Commissioners revise the redistricting plan that follows state statute and the county board’s own guidelines for the redistricting process:

1) “Make minimal changes”; 2) “Make districts more compact & even in
population”; 3) “Ignore Commissioner residences”; 4) “Do not gerrymander”; and 5) Develop scenarios that distributed City wards between 2 to 4 districts.”

The Beltrami County Board approved Proposal 2.

Lucachick was drawn out of his current District 5 as a resident of Turtle Lake Township.

No court date has yet been scheduled for this case.


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