Changes could be coming to the North Okanagan-Shuswap federal electoral boundaries.
A new Vernon-Lake Country district is being considered by the Federal Electoral Boundaries Commission.
The proposal is to carve the City of Vernon and part of Coldstream out of the existing North Okanagan-Shuswap electoral district (NOS ED) and form a new Vernon-Lake Country district. It would include the City of Vernon, part of Coldstream, Lake Country, and a narrow strip of Kelowna through Glenmore and all the way to the Okanagan Lake bridge.
The new NOS ED would include the remainder of Coldstream, the areas surrounding Vernon (areas B, C, D, E and F), Salmon Arm, Revelstoke and extend west to take in east Kamloops.
The public can provide feedback on the proposal until Oct. 3, 2022.
“This is a non-partisan issue that affects all of us,” said Heather Clay, CEO of the North Okanagan-Shuswap Federal Green Party Electoral District Association. “The addition of a new Vernon-Lake Country electoral district will have huge implications and we want to ensure that voters have the opportunity to have their voices heard.”
The North Okanagan-Shuswap Green Party presented its own proposal at a hearing in June.
The Green proposal includes Vernon and the entire Regional District of North Okanagan (RDNO), as well as Falkland and the area between Falkland and Vernon, the north west side of Okanagan Lake as far south as Fintry, and Lake Country (without any part of Kelowna).
“It is our view that electoral district boundaries need to be fair in terms of population, geographically logical and historically informed. They also need to be as socially cohesive as possible, both for the election process and for subsequent representation,” said Clay. “We believe a little local knowledge could help improve the decision on where boundaries are drawn. We encourage everyone to participate in the process.”
To provide feedback to the Federal Electoral Boundaries Commission, email BC-CB@redecoupage-federal-redistribution.ca or mail: Secretary, Federal Electoral Boundaries Commission for British Columbia, 1055 West Hastings St., Suite 300, Vancouver, B.C. V6E 2E9. Include your name, address and contact information.
The Constitution of Canada requires that federal electoral districts be reviewed every 10 years to reflect changes and movements in Canada’s population.
More information about redistribution can be found here https://redecoupage-redistribution-2022.ca/index_e.aspx.