The U.S. Census Bureau expects to certify New Jersey’s population no later than June 17.
New Jersey was informed of the new target date on Monday on a call with census officials organized by the National Council of State Legislatures (NCSL), the New Jersey Globe has learned.
The state Office of Legislative Services was participated on the call.
Legislative leaders are moving forward with a proposed constitutional amendment that would retain the current map for Senate and Assembly seats originally approved in 2011 for the 2021 election, and then draw new districts for 2023 – unless census data arrives by February 15.
Senate President Steve Sweeney and Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin are seeking to avoid legislative elections in three consecutive years.
A 1981 federal court decision in Virginia held that if legislative maps aren’t ready on time, candidates would run in the old district until the next general election.
The coronavirus pandemic slowed the census count, and the Trump administration had said certification could be delayed by as much as four months.
If voters reject the constitutional amendment in November, the results of the current census could push the 2021 primary to September.