The New York state Court of Appeals' ruling that orders an independent commission to draw new congressional maps has many experts concerned about the tight timeline and the high stakes.

“You have this fatally flawed redistricting process in an intensely partisan environment where the stakes couldn’t be higher,” said Blair Horner, executive director of New York Public Interest Research Group.

He said New York’s redistricting process is far from a match to our current political climate.

“We assume that Democrats and Republicans can agree on something important and act in the public’s best interest but in reality that doesn’t happen,” he said.

Ken Jenkins, chairman of the Independent Redistricting Commission who will draw the new maps, feels differently.

“There will be bumps in the road but we will be able to work through them,” he said.

The commission could deadlock and kick the process back to the state Legislature again, but he said hindsight is 20/20 and the combination of court rulings, public feedback from the last process, and new faces on the commission gives him faith that they won’t run into the gridlock that led to the last round of maps being drawn up by the Legislature.

“If we work hard and diligent through that, I know my Republican colleagues, my Democratic colleagues are all prepared to do this work and get this accomplished and handed off to the state Legislature,” he said.

The work needs to be done by Feb. 28, and on the list of people who are concerned about reaching that deadline is Gov. Kathy Hochul.

“This has to happen very quickly and I’m calling on the independent commission to do their jobs, be thoughtful, come up with a plan and let the process continue,” she said.

Horner said he can see the potential for more gridlock that could hold up that process.

“If a deal is all that can happen, why would Republicans agree to anything other than what they have now?” he said.

He emphasizes that both parties have a lot to lose.

“Control of the House of Representatives may run through New York and there are six districts that Politico reporters identified as important ones that could make all the difference in the world,” he said.

The state Constitution puts final approval in the hands of the state Legislature and Horner said the entire process is made even more muddy by the fact that whatever the involvement the state Legislature turns out to be, it will be interrupting the work they’re heading to Albany in January to do.