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Letter: Redistricting plan is worth a 'yes'

State Sen. Lee Zeldin casts his vote at

State Sen. Lee Zeldin casts his vote at the Mastic Beach firehouse Tuesday morning on June 24, 2014, as one of his twin daughters, Mikayla, 7, peeks out while voting with Zeldin's wife Diana.There other daughter, Arianna, 7, is next to Zeldin. Credit: James Carbone

Newsday urged its readers to reject Proposal 1 on the Nov. 4 ballot because it does not do enough to improve New York State's corrupt and broken redistricting process ["Reject proposal on election maps," Editorial, Oct. 16].

To the contrary, the League of Women Voters believes that Proposal 1 represents a real improvement to the current system. We have been fighting for decades for redistricting reform, and this is a unique opportunity to take back power from the legislature in a state that does not have laws allowing voter-initiated referendums or initiatives.

This reform would put us ahead of the game compared with the vast majority of states where the legislature draws lines directly. Even in those few states with citizen -- non-legislator -- commissions, legislative leaders and elected officials almost always have a say in selecting members.

Proposal 1 bans the practice of legislators drawing electoral maps to favor incumbents or parties by establishing a politically balanced commission charged with drawing fair district maps. Proposal 1 requires the commission to release extensive information and conduct 12 public hearings throughout the state, ensuring greater transparency.

We cannot wait any longer for Albany to fix itself.

Sally Robinson, Albany

Editor's note: The writer is the president of the League of Women Voters of New York State.