TALLAHASSEE — Pointing to a time crunch, a Leon County circuit judge has given the Florida Legislature little more than two months to draw new congressional districts and to defend them in court.
Judge George S. Reynolds III issued an order Wednesday that said a special legislative session to redraw districts and a subsequent trial must be finished by Sept. 25. The order came after the Florida Supreme Court last week tossed out eight congressional districts because it found that lawmakers violated a 2010 constitutional amendment aimed at preventing gerrymandering.
Reynolds’ order said Leon County Circuit Judge Terry Lewis, who has presided over the long-running case, will be assigned to continue hearing it. A conference will be held July 27 to resolve issues such as scheduling.