Electoral boundaries readjusted

Summerland and Penticton will no longer share a Member of Parliament when the next electoral boundary changes take effect.

Summerland and Penticton will no longer share a Member of Parliament when the next electoral boundary changes take effect.

Under the changes, Summerland will be part of the new district of Central Okanagan — Similkameen — Nicola while Penticton will be in the riding of South Okanagan — West Kootenay.

The Central Okanagan — Similkameen — Nicola riding also includes Princeton, Merritt, Peachland and a portion of Kelowna.

The South Okanagan — West Kootenay riding includes Keremeos, Oliver, Osoyoos, Castlegar and Nelson.

Members of Summerland’s municipal council are concerned with the redrawn boundaries.

“I don’t think it’s good,” said Mayor Janice Perrino. She added that Penticton and Summerland are closely connected.

The two communities are in the same school district and health care region.

MLA Dan Ashton said the two communities should have been kept together.

“Summerland doesn’t belong in a relationship with the north,” he said.

The British Columbia commission on boundary changes set out its recommendations to create ridings which were near the name population size..

“The Commission had received submissions to place Summerland in the same electoral district as Penticton. This was deemed unfeasible because it would have resulted in an electoral district with a population variance well above the electoral quota,” the report said.

Electoral boundaries are reviewed every 10 years, following the census results.

The ridings are set out based on population.

The Central Okanagan — Similkameen — Nicola riding will have 104,398 people, according to the 2011 census results. This is close to the target population for a riding.