Opinion

Our take: Good move to include the Lake in new riding

It seems likely Cowichan will divorce Nanaimo and marry Langford in Canada’s electoral boundary map.

And the fact the Cowichan Lake area will be part of the family appears to be evidence that sometimes the government actually does listen.

Canada is a living, breathing, shifting entity — families move and grow, communities develop and wane. Electoral boundaries that made sense at one point in our nation’s history eventually become counterproductive to their original goals.

Seats must be added to reflect the changing population, and last year, it was determined B.C. was among four provinces warranting new seats — in our case six of them.

As the agency charged with giving our Parliament a makeup that is both fair and representative, it is the B.C. electoral boundary commission’s role to draw the lines.

Last year, the commission released its draft method for squeezing the new seats in, a method that included bumping the total number of Vancouver Island ridings from six to seven.

And among its methods for doing that was the decision to chop the current Nanaimo-Cowichan riding in half, with the majority of News Leader Pictorial readers becoming part of a new district called South Cowichan-Juan de Fuca. The notable exception was Lake Cowichan.

During hearings in the fall, Lake leaders lobbied hard against their exclusion and it appears they were successful.

The Cowichan-Malahat-Langford riding is the result, and if it survives further revisions, it could be in place in time for an election as early as April 2014.

It’s not ideal; these things rarely are. But from what we can see so far, it is probably the best our region could have hoped for.

Nice job. We hope it sticks.

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