Today, the Boundary Commission for Wales (the Commission) published all the representations, including the transcripts from the public hearings held across Wales, it has received during its initial consultation period. The publication of these representations sees the start of a 4 week public consultation period during which the Commission asks people to ‘have their say’ on the views of others. People may add their support to others’ alternative proposals, or provide evidence which supports an alternative view or supports the Commission’s initial proposals.
The Parliamentary Voting System and Constituencies Act 2011 requires a reduction in the number of UK constituencies from 650 to 600 and for every UK constituency to have an electorate within the range of 71,031 to 78,507. This statutory range is, in all bar one case, much larger than current constituency sizes in Wales. Compliance with the legislation requires a reduction in the number of constituencies in Wales from 40 to 29 which is the biggest single change to Wales since the Boundary Commission was created in 1944. There are changes to every constituency in the Commission’s Initial Proposals, some of them considerable. The Commission has, however, ensured that the Initial Proposals are fully compliant with the requirements of the legislation.
Steve Halsall, Secretary to the Commission, said today;
“The Commission has produced a set of initial proposals which meet the requirements of the 2011 Act. It has also taken into account other relevant factors and has sought to identify the solutions most suitable to local needs within Wales. I would emphasise that these are initial proposals and I very much hope that members of the public will participate in the process of consultation.”
Steve Halsall went on to say;
“Today we are opening the second consultation. Over the next 4 weeks people may visit our consultation portal and read the representations we have received on our initial proposals. We would like people to read those that are relevant to their area and let us know what they think of the submissions of others – whether they accept or object – we are keen to hear people’s views. Where people object – particularly where they can supply counter-proposals – the Commission will give full consideration and may amend its proposals accordingly”.
The Commission’s revised proposals are likely to be published in the autumn of 2017. The Commission’s final proposals will be submitted by October 2018.
Full details are available at www.bcw2018.org.uk.
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