PHOTOS: A typical scene in voter heavy rural Alberta. Well, they’ve probably updated the sign on the truck trailer by now, or, if not, they will soon. (Photo: J. McPherson, Wikimedia Commons.) Below: Daveberta.ca blogger Dave Cournoyer.
Stand by for an often-mentioned agricultural product to hit the fan. Alberta’s Electoral Boundaries Commission has issued its much-anticipated final report and it calls for one new urban riding in the Edmonton area and two in the Calgary region.
In addition, if the commission’s recommendations are adopted by MLAs, rural Alberta will lose three MLAs, as traditionally heavily over-represented rural electoral districts are consolidated to partly reflect long-term trends in population change.
This will inevitably be described as an attack on rural areas and the voters who live in them by the UCP, although the same things or something much like them would have had to happen in much the same way if the commission had done its work under a Conservative government. Demographics, after all, don’t lie, even if they’re frequently lied about.
Four electoral districts will be consolidated into three in the area northwest of Edmonton; five will be consolidated into four in the area west of Red Deer; and seven will be consolidated into six in the area generally east of Calgary. Added will also be the new urban ridings of Airdrie-Cochrane, in suburban areas north and west of Calgary, and Calgary-North East and Edmonton-South, within the two cities’ boundaries. Assuming, of course, that the Legislature follows through on the commission’s recommendations.
Interestingly, in its final report, the Boundaries Commission accepted almost all of the long list of recommendations made by my colleague and fellow blogger Dave Cournoyer in his submission to the commission and his response to its interim report.