Egan v. Hammond, No. 1711

CourtSupreme Court of Alaska (US)
Writing for the CourtBefore BONEY; RABINOWITZ; BOOCHEVER; Before RABINOWITZ; BOOCHEVER
Citation502 P.2d 856
Decision Date21 July 1972
Docket NumberNo. 1711
PartiesWilliam A. EGAN, Governor of Alaska, et al., Petitioners, v. Jay S. HAMMOND et al., Respondents.

Page 856

502 P.2d 856
William A. EGAN, Governor of Alaska, et al., Petitioners,
v.
Jay S. HAMMOND et al., Respondents.
No. 1711.
Supreme Court of Alaska.
July 21, 1972.
Opinion Sept. 29, 1972.

John E. Havelock, Atty. Gen., Richard W. Garnett, III, Asst. Atty. Gen., Juneau, for petitioners.

Page 859

Clifford J. Groh, of Groh, Benkert, Greene & Walter, Anchorage, for respondents.

OPINION IN RE OBJECTIONS TO INTERIM REAPPORTIONMENT PLAN

Before BONEY, C. J., and RABINOWITZ, CONNOR, ERWIN and BOOCHEVER, JJ.

RABINOWITZ, Justice.

In our Decision and Order of May 26, 1972, 1 this court declared the reapportionment plan embodied in the December 30, 1971, Proclamation of Reapportionment and Redistricting unconstitutional under the equal protection and supremacy clauses of the Constitution of the United States of America. We reached this conclusion for the reason that the proposed plan in its overall reapportionment of the Senate and House of Representatives would have established election districts which failed to encompass 'as nearly equal population proportions as is practicable.' To insure compliance with the equal protection requirements of Reynolds v. Sims, 377 U.S. 533, 84 S.Ct. 1362, 12 L.Ed.2d 506 (1964), and its progeny, it was further determined that an interim reapportionment and redistricting plan, designed to meet the imminent 1972 elections, required formulation. In furtherance of this task, two Masters were appointed to assist the court in fashioning an appropriate interim reapportionment plan.

On May 26, 1972, the appointed Masters were given the following instructions in pertinent part: 2

1. By use of the official Census of 1970, you should establish a population base for the State of Alaska. This population base should include military personnel who were enumerated in the 1970 Census.

2. You should make an inquiry to determine whether or not the number of nonresident military personnel included in the 1970 Census can be determined. If a determination can be made, then you should subtract the number from the total which you have arrived at in paragraph 1 above. You should also state the methods in detail by which you arrived at this determination.

After receipt of the Masters' Report, 3 an 'Order Establishing an Interim Reapportionment Plan for 1972 Legislative Elections' was entered on June 14, 1972. 4 In its relevant part this order stated:

By use of the Official Census of 1970, the Court determines that the total population base for the State of Alaska shall

Page 860

be 302,361. This figure includes the military population residing in the State of Alaska at the time of the Official Census of April, 1970. In the time available to the Court for the preparation of the interim plan, the Court could find no feasible method of excluding some or all of the military personnel from the total population base. Moreover, computations revealed that changes in representation under the interim plan due to the inclusion of military personnel were minimal.

Subsequent to the entry of this court's order establishing an interim reapportionment plan, petitioners filed objections thereto on the stated grounds:

The Court erred in instructing the masters that the population base should include all military personnel who were enumerated in the 1970 census and in allowing nonresident military personnel enumerated by the census to be counted for the purpose of determining the population size and shape of particular districts. . . .

Petitioners contended that the effect of the inclusion of all enumerated military personnel was to give greater political power to those communities which adjoin major military installations. In arguing for preservation of the civilian population concept, 5 petitioners state that Alaska's legislature established a presumption against residency of military personnel except on affirmation of intent by the person involved that he chooses to be an Alaska resident. 6 In overruling petitioners' objection to the inclusion in the interim plan's population base of all military personnel who were enumerated in the 1970 Census, in our order of June 20, 1972, 7 we said in part:

(We) could find no feasible basis for the exclusion of part or all of the military population from the population base required for interim reapportionment. Under the Alaska Constitution this base must include all residents of the State of Alaska as enumerated in the decennial census. The base is not limited to voter population. Neither the 1971 reapportionment plan nor the materials relied upon by the petitioners provide a legal basis for identifying nonresident military personnel in order to eliminate them from the population base.

In the absence of reliable data, the elimination of the military from the population base as a class of persons would be a denial of equal protection of the law, prohibited by the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. (Footnotes omitted.)

Davis v. Mann, 377 U.S. 678, 84 S.Ct. 1441, 12 L.Ed.2d 609, 617 (1964), instructs that it is constitutionally impermissible to discriminate against a class of individuals merely because of the nature of their employment. Given Davis v. Mann, this court is nevertheless under the duty, pursuant to article VI, section 3 of the Alaska constitution, to employ census data in determining the total population base for purposes of formulating an interim reapportionment plan. 8 The census practice of enumeration is as follows:

In accordance with census practice dating back to 1790, each person enumerated in the 1970 census was counted as an inhabitant

Page 861

of his usual place of residence, which is generally construed to mean the place where he lives and sleeps most of the time. This place is not necessarily the same as his legal residence, voting residence or domicile. 9

In light of the unconstitutionality of the civilian-military distinction made in article VI, section 3 of the constitution of Alaska for purposes of determining the requisite population base and this provision's further requirement that Alaska's population base be computed from census data, we concluded that in fashioning an interim reapportionment plan no lawful requirement or reliable basis existed for isolation and exclusion from the total population base of those military or civilians who were living in Alaska and enumerated in the 1970 census but did not at the time possess the intent of making Alaska their home. Alaska's constitution requires that the requisite population total be arrived at by use of the census data. It does not mandate a population base composed exclusively of registered voters, citizens who have previously voted in Alaska, or only those people living in Alaska with the intention of making Alaska their home. 10

It is for these reasons that this court decided that petitioners' objections to the inclusion of all military personnel, who were enumerated in the 1970 census in the total population base for purposes of determining an interim reapportionment plan should be overruled. 11

BOOCHEVER, Justice (dissenting).

I dissent from so much of the court's order as overrules petitioners' objection to inclusion, under the court's interim reapportionment plan, of all military personnel who were enumerated in the 1970 Census for the purpose of determining the population size and shape of particular districts.

I agree with the majority that it is impermissible to discriminate against a class of individuals because of the nature of their employment without more being shown, Davis v. Mann, 377 U.S. 678, 691, 84 S.Ct. 1441, 12 L.Ed.2d 609, 617 (1964), just as it is unconstitutional to deprive members of a class such as the military of their right to vote, Carrington v. Rash, 380 U.S. 89, 85 S.Ct. 775, 13 L.Ed.2d 675 (1965).

The United States Supreme Court, however, has recognized the problems created by including in population counts proportionately large numbers of military personnel (and other transients) having few ties with the state in which they are physically present. In Burns v. Richardson, 384 U.S. 73, 86 S.Ct. 1286, 16 L.Ed.2d 376 (1966), the Court affirmed the use of a registered voter base for Hawaii knowing that this system eliminated a much higher proportion of military than civilian persons. The Court indicated its approval of state citizen population as a permissible population base. Id. at 92-95, 86 S.Ct. at 1296-1298, 16 L.Ed.2d at 391-92.

The use in Alaska of the April 1970 Census figures for civilians in effect established a state citizen population base for

Page 862

other than military. The April date effectively eliminated the large number of summer tourists and transient construction and fishing employees, leaving to be counted with minimal exceptions those voluntarily living in the state with the intention of making Alaska their home. 1

While voting statistics are not synonymous with records of state citizenship, they do furnish a significant indication of a relatively definable military group's nexus with the state. Of the 9,818 census population of military personnel and civilian employees 18 years of age and over residing on the Elmendorf and Ft. Richardson bases, only 102 persons or approximately 1 percent voted as Alaskans in the November 3, 1970 election. At Eielsen and Ft. Wainwright, 172 of 9,997 or 1.7 percent so voted. Slightly higher figures of 8.8 percent and 4 percent voted at Adak and Kodiak, while none of Shemya's 1,131 voted. Civilians were also present on most of the bases so that the percentage of military personnel voting on the bases was in all probability even more minuscule. 2 Approximately 52 percent of the remaining Alaskan population over 18 years of age residing off the bases voted in the same election. (Masters' Report, Table 9) Moreover, according to the files of the Alaska Command, there are only 190 Alaskan 'residents of record' among Army and Air Force personnel stationed in Alaska.

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17 practice notes
  • Pearson v. Koster, Nos. SC 92317
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Missouri
    • July 3, 2012
    ...of the Justices, 353 Mass. 790, 230 N.E.2d 801, 804 (1967); State ex rel. Lockert v. Crowell, 656 S.W.2d 836 (Tenn.1983); Egan v. Hammond, 502 P.2d 856, 867 (Alaska 1972). 8.In re Reapportionment of Towns of Hartland, Windsor, and W. Windsor, 160 Vt. 9, 624 A.2d 323, 327 (1993). 9.Pearson I......
  • Lynden Transport, Inc. v. State, Nos. 2100 and 2114-2117
    • United States
    • Alaska Supreme Court
    • February 24, 1975
    ...§ 44.11 (4th ed. Sands 1973) (footnotes omitted). 36 393 P.2d 893 (Alaska 1964). 37 460 P.2d 77 (Alaska 1969). See also Egan v. Hammond, 502 P.2d 856 (Alaska 1972), where we held that an invalid section of the State Constitution requiring reapportionment to be based on 'civilian population ......
  • John Doe v. Department of Public Safety, Supreme Court No. S-16748
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Alaska (US)
    • June 14, 2019
    ...whether there is any specific evidence of sexual dangerousness, is not irrational.").14 Op. at 135.15 Op. at 135–36.16 Egan v. Hammond , 502 P.2d 856, 871 (Alaska 1972) (quoting Champlin Refining Co. v. Corp. Comm'n , 286 U.S. 210, 234, 52 S.Ct. 559, 76 L.Ed. 1062 (1932) ); see also Alaskan......
  • Watson v. State, Supreme Court No. S-16752
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Alaska (US)
    • May 28, 2021
    ...sentence for juveniles). The parties in this case did not raise this issue so we have no occasion to address it.65 See Egan v. Hammond , 502 P.2d 856, 871 (Alaska 1972) ("A statute bad in part is not necessarily void in its entirety." (quoting Dorchy v. Kansas , 264 U.S. 286, 289, 44 S.Ct. ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
17 cases
  • Pearson v. Koster, Nos. SC 92317
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Missouri
    • July 3, 2012
    ...of the Justices, 353 Mass. 790, 230 N.E.2d 801, 804 (1967); State ex rel. Lockert v. Crowell, 656 S.W.2d 836 (Tenn.1983); Egan v. Hammond, 502 P.2d 856, 867 (Alaska 1972). 8.In re Reapportionment of Towns of Hartland, Windsor, and W. Windsor, 160 Vt. 9, 624 A.2d 323, 327 (1993). 9.Pearson I......
  • Lynden Transport, Inc. v. State, Nos. 2100 and 2114-2117
    • United States
    • Alaska Supreme Court
    • February 24, 1975
    ...§ 44.11 (4th ed. Sands 1973) (footnotes omitted). 36 393 P.2d 893 (Alaska 1964). 37 460 P.2d 77 (Alaska 1969). See also Egan v. Hammond, 502 P.2d 856 (Alaska 1972), where we held that an invalid section of the State Constitution requiring reapportionment to be based on 'civilian population ......
  • John Doe v. Department of Public Safety, Supreme Court No. S-16748
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Alaska (US)
    • June 14, 2019
    ...whether there is any specific evidence of sexual dangerousness, is not irrational.").14 Op. at 135.15 Op. at 135–36.16 Egan v. Hammond , 502 P.2d 856, 871 (Alaska 1972) (quoting Champlin Refining Co. v. Corp. Comm'n , 286 U.S. 210, 234, 52 S.Ct. 559, 76 L.Ed. 1062 (1932) ); see also Alaskan......
  • Watson v. State, Supreme Court No. S-16752
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Alaska (US)
    • May 28, 2021
    ...sentence for juveniles). The parties in this case did not raise this issue so we have no occasion to address it.65 See Egan v. Hammond , 502 P.2d 856, 871 (Alaska 1972) ("A statute bad in part is not necessarily void in its entirety." (quoting Dorchy v. Kansas , 264 U.S. 286, 289, 44 S.Ct. ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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